CRIME & COURTS / 9 January 2017, 06:58am
This pig snout was left at Simons Town mosque. Picture: Facebook
Cape Town – The Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) has expressed deep concern over the violation of the Simon’s Town mosque after a pig’s snout and blood were found outside its door on Saturday morning.
The incident was believed to have occurred after Fajr (morning prayers) – sometime between 4am and 8am – as a caretaker was the first to see the snout. On Sunday, MJC secretary-general Sheikh Isgaak Taliep condemned what he called a hate crime against the sanctity of the mosque in Simon’s Town.
“The MJC believes that the rights of the broader Muslim community have definitely been violated, and this is something that will never be tolerated.
“The MJC continues to condemn all forms of racism, discrimination, Islamophobia, xenophobia and all forms of human rights violations. The MJC reiterates that places of worship are places of sanctity and as such all such places of worship must be respected.
“We call upon all Muslims to be law-abiding citizens and act in accordance with the law of our country.
“In exercising our rights as citizens, the MJC has lodged an official complaint with the South African Human Rights Commission… for justice and freedom to prevail.
“A criminal charge has also been lodged against the perpetrator of this particular crime at the Simon’s Town police station.”
Advocate Mohamed Shafie Ameermia, Commissioner of the South African Humans Rights Commission (SAHRC), said the organisation was committed to maintaining the values of the constitution in the investigation.
“We take this matter very seriously and a violation is a violation. We will not tolerate intolerance.
“We really want now to go to Parliament and legislate for hate crimes to be criminalised because I think that more than 20 years into democracy we keep on talking about these things, but it’s falling on deaf ears.”
Mayor Patricia De Lille also condemned what she believed was intended to hurt members of Cape Town’s community.
“Every day, we urge residents to work with us as we build an inclusive city where all kinds of diversity are celebrated. The true beauty of our city lies in all cultures living together. There is no place for religious intolerance in our city.
“Now is the time for all the people of Cape Town to stand together and reject those who disrespect the religious practices and choices of others. Freedom of religion is enshrined in our Constitution, and this right must be safeguarded.”
MJC president Sheikh Irfaan Abrahams also urged fellow Muslims not to take the law into their own hands in retaliation.
Kalk Bay mosque smeared with blood
CRIME & COURTS / 10 January 2017, 06:55am
The desecration of Masjidul-Jamiah in Kalk Bay is the second attack on masjids in three days. Picture: Bertram Malgas/Daily Voice
Cape Town – A second mosque has been attacked in the Cape in just three days.
In the latest incident, the Masjidul-Jamiah in Kalk Bay was splattered with blood and holy scriptures broken on Monday.
The imam at the mosque, Achmat Sity, said vandals broke into the mosque in Quarterdeck Road overnight, before flinging blood on the mimbaar (pulpit) and tearing down rakkams (framed scriptures) from the wall.
The mosque committee held a meeting on Monday night to discuss the incident. Imam Sity indicated that the matter will be reported to police on Tuesday.
Just two days earlier in nearby Simon’s Town, a bloody pig’s snout was left on the gate of Noorul Islam mosque.
The pig is regarded as a dirty animal in Islam and Muslims are forbidden from consuming its flesh.
And last week, a Langebaan resident called for the local mosque to be burnt down because “Muslim bastards” were “blaring their call to prayer five times a day over massive speakers”.
Liam Christian Ferreira has since apologised for his remarks on Facebook, and slammed the pig incident.
Speaking to the Daily Voice on Monday, Imam Sity says their caretaker, Jalaal Kayser, discovered the mosque was vandalised early on Monday morning when he opened for fajr (sunrise) prayers.
The vandals had broken in via a side door.
“Someone had smeared blood all over the mimbaar and also broke some rakkams,” the imam said.
“We need to see what exactly was done and we will report the matter to the police.”
It is not clear what kind of blood was used in the attack.
Jalaal said he cleaned up the mess before informing anyone “because I couldn’t leave the mosque in that state”.
There are now fears of an anti-Muslim campaign being waged in the Cape.
Sity said: “This incident could be related to the Simon’s Town incident. If it is related, it points to someone in the area who is responsible for defacing our mosques.
“We can’t pinpoint a suspect at this stage. We have a good relationship with all faiths in Kalk Bay and surrounding areas, we have interfaith services with the Jewish and Christian communities.”
Sity said the mosque, the only one in Kalk Bay, has been the target of vandals and thieves in the past.
“The mosque has been vandalised and broken into before, but it is the first time that blood is involved. These are sick individuals,” he added.
“Some time ago the mimbaar was broken, but we found out that this was done by a former employee who was fired and he wanted to get back at us.
“We’ve also had break-ins where our safe was broken into. We’ve had to replace the safe numerous times, the last incident was in October.”
Sity added: “We will now have to look at locking the mosque unless we have someone who can look after it permanently.”
Muslim Judicial Council president, Sheikh Irafaan Abrahams, speaking after the Simon’s Town pig incident, said while they acknowledged people’s anger and disgust, the MJC urged Muslims not to retaliate.