“I appeal to whoever sights the moon on Friday evening to contact me immediately for verification,” Kakungulu said.
RELIGION | IDD | RAMADHAN |UGANDA
Muslims will on Friday evening know when Idd el-Fitr which marks the end of their fasting, be celebrated.
According to the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC), Director of Sharia, Sheikh Yahaya Ibrahim Kakungulu, Friday will be the 29th day since Muslims commenced fasting on April 24.
Kakungulu has advised Muslims to look out for the moon on Friday evening.
"I implore Muslims and other trusted members of the public, to look out for the moon on Friday evening since it is the 29th day of the holy month of Ramadhan," Kakungulu said.
He noted that if the moon is sighted on Friday evening, Idd will be celebrated on Saturday but if it is not sighted, it will automatically be marked on Sunday.
However, due to COVID-19 pandemic, there will be no communal prayers in the mosque.
The month of Ramadhan in which Muslims fast from dawn to sunset on a daily basis, lasts between 29 to 30 days.
Fasting is the fourth pillar of the Islamic religion and it is considered a special month of the Islamic religion in which the Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad. Fasting is observed annually.
Kakungulu who is the only sheikh in the country authorised to announce Idd day appealed to those who would sight the moon to contact him immediately on the following numbers 0702/0772-525-171 or 0772588316.
"I appeal to whoever sights the moon on Friday evening to contact me immediately for verification," Kakungulu said.
He warned that only people with sober minds with no disputed integrity are supposed to contact him about moon sighting.
"Information from subsequent liars is not accepted," Kakungulu said.
Pay zakat before Idd
Meanwhile, the Mufti of Uganda Sheikh Ramadhan Mubajje, has urged Muslims to pay Zakat al-Fitr before Idd prayers despite the COVID-19 lockdown. He explained that payment of Zakat al-Fitr perfects ones fasting.
"Most of our fasting comes with shortfalls. However, Prophet Muhammad encouraged us to pay Zakat al-Fitr, saying that one's fasting will be hanging between earth and heavens and it will not be raised up to the divine presence without paying the Zakat al-Fitr," Mubajje said.
Zakat al-Fitr is a charity taken to the poor, a few days before the end of fasting in the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. Fitr is the same as Iftar meaning breaking the fast.
Mubajje noted that every Muslim is required to pay Zakat al-Fitr at the conclusion of the month of Ramadhan as a token of thankfulness to God for having enabled them to observe the obligatory fast.
Sheikh Imran Ssali, an Imam at Gadaffi national mosque, said the amount of Zakat al -Fitr is the same for everyone regardless of their varying economic status.
"Unlike Zakatul- Mali which is only supposed to be paid by wealthy Muslims, every Muslim including children are supposed to pay it," Ssali said.
Zakat al-Fitr is payable in the form of cash and foodstuffs like rice, bananas, and maize among others.