Penang CM’s Office denies banning early morning prayers at mosques

Opalyn Mok
Lawyer RSN Rayer and information officer to the Penang chief minister Zahar Zainul show the police report and posters outside the Northeast District Police Station in George Town December 30, 2019. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

GEORGE TOWN, Dec 30 — The office of the Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow has denied ordering mosques in the state to withhold early morning prayers as spread on social media.

Chow’s special officer Zahar Zainul lodged a police report today against the viral messages attributed to the chief minister that claimed the “DAP government” had ordered a reduction in the frequency of prayers at mosques and even outright banned dawn prayers.

“This is fitnah and not true. The Penang chief minister has never interfered with the administration of Islamic affairs in the state and never gave such orders,” Zahar told reporters after filing the complaint at the Northeast District police headquarters here.

The official said the statement spread on social media over the last two days was false and is intended to cause racial disharmony and unease among the Muslims.

Jelutong MP and lawyer RSN Rayer who accompanied Zahar said the statement claimed morning prayers were banned at a mosque in York Road in his constituency.

“This false allegation was spread through social media and even people in Sabah, Sarawak and overseas have received this false statement,” he said.

He hoped the police will investigate and take stern action against those who created the false statement and posted it on social media.

The Penang Chief Minister’s Office has lodged a police report against this false statement that was spread on social media over the last two days.

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