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Crime And Media Management Strategy At Masaajid During Ramadaan

Ml Muhammad Bham| mbham@radioislam.co.za | 18 March 2023| 12:32pm CAT| 3 minute read

Masājid have unfortunately not been spared from criminal elements and thuggery in recent times.

The month of Ramadhaan may present an easy opportunity to criminals on the prowl.

The Johannesburg Branch of Jamiatul Ulama SA held a special crime AND media management orientation programme at the Johannesburg Muslim School on Friday evening.

Secretary General of the Jamiatul Ulama SA, Moulana Ebrahim Bham stressed on the importance of ‘working together’ as well as ‘we rise together and we fall together as a nation therefore we should rather bring something positive than being negative.’.

Addressing the topic of Crime management within a Masjid context, Dr Mikail Reza Patel, head of the civilian crime intelligence, Member of the Executive  of the Gauteng Provincial Community Police Board, stressed on the importance of having the correct security measures and protocols in place for masaajid.

He stressed the need to form perimeters of various forms to protect out masaajid, some of which includes, off site surveillance using AI like CCTV footage, armed response teams and visible guards at the entrances of our masaajid.

During the month of Ramadaan, extra perimeters can be added by getting the community members involved.

In the case of a crime incident at a masjid, the responsible brothers reporting the incident should call 10111 and not the local community police station.

An IR (Incident Report) number will be issued. This IR number is very important in the event that police say they were not informed of the incident.

Dr Reza also stressed the importance of why every crime incident should be reported to the police.

Preserving a crime scene is very important, and for this we need to train some people in our masjid on how to manage a crime scene and also to equip them with much needed first-response tools and techniques in crowd control.

CPF members must be on our speed dial list.

Covering the topic of Media management strategy post a crime event especially at a Masjid, Mohammed Cajee of Asri said that it is important for every masjid to have a spokesperson put in place in the event that an incident does occur, the media will not come and speculate on the incident and drive the narrative to suit their agenda, but rather one narrative will be given and at the same time, all speculation of the incident and cause of the incident or reason of the incident will be negated.

It will be the job of the spokesperson to communicate with the media and it will also stop the flow of having multiple narratives for one single incident.

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