SABC News - Cape Towns ‘Open Mosque’ to remain closed:Tuesday 23 September 2014

Cape Town's ‘Open Mosque’ to remain closed

Tuesday 23 September 2014 06:11

SABC

City of Cape Town councillor says the warehouse serving as a Mosque, needs to be rezoned.(SABC)

The City of Cape Town says the so called ‘Open Mosque’ in Wynberg that held its first prayer service last Friday, will remain closed until it complies with zoning requirements.

Councillor Ganief Hendricks says the warehouse serving as a Mosque, needs to be rezoned.

Cape Town born Oxford Academic, Taj Hargey, founded the mosque which welcomes non-Muslims, homosexuals, and allows women to lead prayers.

Hendricks says a rezoning application could take up to four months to complete.

“The regulations say for every two worshippers there needs to be a parking bay. There is no place for any parking bays on the premises, so they won’t be able to meet the parking regulations. It is highly unlikely that the city will grant the application to change it from a warehouse to a mosque. The only solution is if they buy the premises next door and then combine the two,” explains Hendricks.

The city closed down the mosque on Saturday, but Hargey says it will re-open soon.

“The reason why the mosque has been closed for the last two days is [because] I’m in Johannesburg and Durban meeting with important people supporting the mosque. The moment I return to Cape Town on Tuesday the mosque will be operating as usual. There is a mixed view zone allowing for a place of worship, the only thing we need to sort out with the council is how many parking spaces [are available],” adds Hargey.

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