22 April 2020
1. As mentioned during the Ministerial Task Force media briefing on 21 Apr 2020, Muis is playing an active a role in providing support for the religious needs of Muslim foreign workers. This is particularly important in view of Ramadan coming up, as well as with a new restriction on the foreign workers living in dormitories having been implemented from 22 April 2020, with movement of workers in and out of all dormitories no longer allowed.
2. Muis recognises the important contribution of foreign workers to Singapore. Aside from their sacrifices and contributions to Singapore’s nation building, Muis also acknowledges the contributions of many Muslim foreign workers to our local mosques. For many years, our Muslim foreign workers have been an integral part of the mosque community. Many have volunteered to support in the preparation of buka puasa meals during Ramadan as well as other volunteer duties in the mosques throughout the year. Now, they too are fighting the battle against COVID-19, alongside the nation.
Translation of important information and religious messages
3. Muis has been actively working with the Ministry of Manpower to disseminate important information on relevant matters. This includes our Imsakiah (prayer time table), Fatwas, irsyads and infographics released during this period, including the Muis Ramadan Handbook, which are translated into Bengali. Muis will continue to provide translated versions of relevant materials to ensure that they remain updated on latest developments.
Guidelines for Ramadan
4. An inter-agency task force has been set up to provide support to foreign workers and dormitory operators. Muis has been working with the task force to help ensure that the health and well-being of the Muslim foreign workers will continue to be taken care of during Ramadan. Religious guidelines specific to Ramadan as well as medical advisories related to fasting are being provided for the Muslim foreign workers in their native language. An advisory on Observing Ramadan at Community Isolation Facilities and Dormitories and guidance on performing Tarawih prayers amidst the outbreak situation are appended here.
5. Muis is working with Masjid Assyakirin to produce short videos by Bengali speaking imams in order to carry religious messages and messages of support to help our Muslim foreign workers manage their religious life during this period. Other mosques have also reached out via video messages and video chats to comfort our Muslim brothers who have served and formed a bond with our mosques. These videos are disseminated via WhatsApp.
6. In addition, Muis has created a dedicated playlist for Bengali resources on SalamSG TV, a special YouTube channel providing online videos for the Muslim community during Ramadan. This will include messages from our Mufti Dr Nazirudin Mohd Nasir, who first addressed our Muslim foreign worker brothers on 13 April in a special message that comes with Bengali subtitles.
7. Just like the rest of the Muslim community, this will be a different Ramadan for our Muslim foreign workers and will be an especially challenging one for our foreign workers given the current situation. Many agencies and non-government groups are working hard to meet their needs, and Muis is committed to be part of this effort. Muis is working hard to ensure that their spiritual needs are met during the upcoming Ramadan. Muis and the mosques will continue to support the Ministry of Manpower and the Inter Agency Task Force, to support the religious needs of our Muslim foreign workers during this challenging time.