Eka Yudha Saputra, Jakarta – The Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) commission on fatwa [a ruling on a point of Islamic law given by a recognized authority] has issued a haram fatwa against women assuming the position of a preacher during a Friday prayer sermon.
The fatwa – filed under fatwa No. 38/2023 – states that if a Friday prayer sermon is offered by a woman in the presence of men, the sermon and Friday prayers are not valid.
This was issued in the wake of public questioning the religious rule of the matter after a statement was made by Panji Gumilang, leader of the Al Zaytun Islamic boarding school [pesantren], who mentioned women are permitted to take the role of the preacher during a Friday prayer.
This fatwa explained that Friday prayer is an obligation for Muslim men and mubah (may) be performed for women, said MUI chairman of fatwa Asrorun Niam Sholeh (Kiai Niam) in his official statement on Thursday, June 22.
MUI called for the Muslim community to stick to straight religious teachings and be vigilant of various forms of irregularities.
"Muslims are expected to be careful in choosing a place of education for their children and the state is obliged to guarantee the protection of religious teachings from deviation, defamation, and insult," said MUI's Kiai Niam.