Mosque officials .

Mosque officials now empowered to enforce the Selangor Syariah Crimes Enactment 1995.

Mosque officials in more than 370 mosques in Selangor have been given authority letters to assist the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) to enforce the Selangor Syariah Crimes Enactment 1995.

The chairman of the Selangor Islamic Affairs, Malay Culture, Infrastructure and Public Amenities committee, Datuk Dr Hasan Mohamed Ali, said only four officials of each mosque were given the authority letters two weeks ago and they were the ‘Nazir’, ‘Imam’, ‘Bilal’ and ‘Siak’.

Among the syarak (Islamic religious law) that will focussed on in the fasting month was eating, drinking and smoking in public during fasting times, Dr Hasan said at a news conference here Monday.

An offence under Section 19 of the Enactment can lead to a maximum fine of RM1,000 or a maximum of six months jail or both.

Dr Hasan said for this offence the mosque officials cannot arrest offenders but could only take down their particulars and the case items and pass them to the religious enforcement officers for further action.

Besides that, Dr Hasan said mosque officials were also asked to pay attention to the drinking of alcohol among Muslims under Section 18 of the enactment for which they could be fined not more than RM3,000 or jailed for not more than two years or both.

Any Muslim who makes, sells, offer for sale, stores or buys alcohol commits an offence under Section 18 (2) and could be fined not more than RM5,000 or jailed a maximum of three years or both.

For the offence of drinking alcohol, the mosque officials can detain offenders but must hand them over to police or religious enforcement officers, he said.

On the directive by the mentri besar for sellers of alcohol to have self-regulation to not sell alcohol to those under 18 years of age or to Muslims, Dr Hasan said mosque officials were asked to monitor whether the directive was effective or not.

“At the same time, effective or not …the Syariah Crimes Enactment 1995 has to be enforced. This is not an ad hoc enactment,” he said. — BERNAMA