Jakarta, wapresri.go.id – The number of masjids in offices, both governmental and private, continues to grow to facilitate Muslim employees to perform the prayers, especially on Fridays.

“Why is the development of masjid amazing? Not only because of our worshipping spirit, but also because of the rule of our country that does not make Friday, the very important day of worship for Muslims as holiday,” said Vice President Jusuf Kalla in his capacity as the Indonesian Mosque Council (DMI) chairman when inaugurated At-Taqwa Mosque at Marine Corps Headquarters on Jalan KKO Usman and Harun Road, Kwitang, Central Jakarta, Friday (Nov. 17).

Several years ago, the Vice President continued, the working days were set from Monday to Saturday with working hours on Fridays only until eleven o’clock, so that Muslim employees could perform their Friday services at the masjid near their homes. Now, he explained, when the workdays has changed to five working days, employees must perform Friday prayers at the office.

“That is why the establishment of masjid is a must. If not, how to perform Friday prayer?” asked Vice President rhetorically.

That also, he further said, is the reason why permits to build a masjid in the office is easier to obtain than permits to establish other places of worship, churches for example.

The Vice President highlighted that this is not discrimination against other religions as it is the rule about the working days that led to the establishment of many office masjids.

“Unless we want to exchange holidays. Day off on Fridays, and we work on Sundays. (If so), we may set up churches in the office,” he said.

Earlier, in his report, the Commander of the Marine Corps Major General TNI Bambang Suswantono told that the At-Taqwa masjid that had been built for five months is equipped with a library and is able to accommodate up to 600 people.

After inaugurating the At-Taqwa Mosque, along with the Marines, the Vice President performed the Friday prayer service at the masjid.

Accompanying the Vice President at the inauguration were Head of the Vice Presidential Secretariat Mohamad Oemar, Deputy for Policy Support on Human Development and Equitable Development Setwapres Bambang Widianto, and Special Staff to the Vice President on Poverty Reduction and Regional Autonomy Syahrul Udjud. (RN/FM, KIP Setwapres).