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Thousands pray for rain

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Muslims heeded the call for an urgent prayer for rain on Sunday, in the wake of South Africa’s growing water crisis. The Jamiatul Ulema South Africa led the Salatul Istisqa in Johannesburg on Sunday morning which saw thousands of Muslims to prostrate in hopes of some relief to the current drought plaguing many parts of the country.

President of the ulema body, Moulana Ebrahim Bham says the prayer took place in different parts of Joburg and surrounding areas but in Mayfair where more than 1200 people attended.

“We asked people in different localities to perform the Salatul Istisqa. This is a matter of serious concern for all South Africans regardless of their religious beliefs. There are certain places in Northern Natal where communities only have two hours of running water,” Bham explained.Bham added that this is a time when Muslims need to seek forgiveness and repent for their shortcomings.

“This is a crisis. From a religious point of view, we have been commanded by Allah. In Surah Nur, Allah says; ‘Seek the forgiveness of Allah. He will forgive you and send down rain for you’.”

 Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane has warned that dam levels have dropped throughout the country. Over R350 million has been set aside to address the drought problems in South Africa.
 “We have this very particular prayer with the focus of seeking Allah’s mercy (Rahmah) and in turn we will receive the rain we need,” Bham added.

Currently, the Free State and North West provinces were declared disaster areas while some areas in Kwazulu Natal only have enough water supply to last 120 days.

Meanwhile, Western Cape has also experienced a significant drop in its dam levels. Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Sanitation, Councillor Ernest Sonnenberg says the City of Cape Town is in the process of weighing out its options on implementing possible water restrictions from the 1st December 2015.

 “While this is not a crisis, we need to remember that last year this time, our damn levels were at 98% full. There has been about a twenty percent drop. We have to put measures in place to ensure the sustainability of our water resource into the future. We have to start saving water now,” Sonnenberg continued. VOC (Ra’eesah Isaacs)

 


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