KEMAMAN: The government is looking into whether mosques in the federal territories should emulate Perlis, which has banned “mukhannath” or transgenders from entering its mosques.
Deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (religious affairs) Ahmad Marzuk Shaary said the religious authorities in Perlis had taken the appropriate steps to maintain the sanctity of mosques and prevent confusion among the Muslim community.
“I am speaking in the context of the federal territories because that is within our jurisdiction. As for other states, it’s up to their respective religious authorities. If we want to encourage other states to follow what is being done in Perlis, we have to look at the seriousness of the cases that occur (in the states).
“For me, what Perlis is doing is something that states can follow, because it is very inappropriate for a man to enter a mosque wearing a headscarf. If a man enters the women’s section (of the mosque), it will disrupt the women’s privacy.
“But if they go (to the mosque) to repent, then it’s okay,” he told reporters after launching a food bank programme at Stesen Teksi here today.
However, Marzuk said so far, the department had not received any information or reports on transgenders “intruding” into mosques.
The Perlis fatwa committee had previously declared that men who presented themselves or dressed like women, such as crossdressers or transgenders, were forbidden from entering state mosques while not dressed in men’s clothes, because they would ‘interfere with the atmosphere of worship in mosques”.
The decision was made during committee meetings on June 23 and 24, and posted on the Perlis mufti department website.