While there are no official rules preventing Muslims from working in non-Muslim/halal establishments in Singapore, there are still many who have strong opinions about Muslims selling pork.
In a post shared on Facebook, user Victor Shafeeq Peters slammed MBK Thai Express, a stall at a Woodlands pasar malam, for having an employee in hijab selling pork satay.
“I will still say that I’m shock[ed] over the fact that this particular stall by the name of MBK THAI EXPRESS has an employee who is wearing hijab while they are selling pork grilled satay.
“I recorded my conversation while I seek clarity with the staff there. They seem rather clueless so I had them call their boss as I feel I needed the answers to my questions,” he said in the post.
Peters then shared the video of the confrontation where he can be heard demanding to know if the woman in hijab working at the stall is Muslim.
He asked the woman rather aggressively why she was selling pork and even told her to remove the hijab if she was handling the meat.
“You come here,” he said to the hijab-wearing worker. “You wear tudung then you want to sell pork?”
“Sis, are you a Muslim? Why are you selling pork? There are a lot of [Muslim] people patronizing this place,” he demanded in Malay.
He also stated in the post that the font used for the menu was in “fine print” and was misleading for other Muslims who would assume that the food at the stall was halal because of the hijab-wearing worker.
Peters claimed that he had come down personally as he was aware of complaints online about the misleading menu.
Religious council steps in
The Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS) also said that they are aware of the situation and even went down to the site.
A MUIS spokesman told Stomp that there were “no halal claims made” and that the “religion of the person serving or preparing the food does not determine its halal status.
While Muslims can only consume halal food and drinks, it is not necessary for Muslims to dine only at places with halal certification. On top of that, the spokesperson said that “We would like to take this opportunity to reiterate that as Muslims, we are required to exercise due diligence before patronising any eatery.”
Under Syariah law, Muslims can consume food prepared and/or sold by non-Muslims as long as they are halal.
If there is any doubt, Muslims are recommended to avoid the food altogether.
However, there is also the issue of his approach.
There were many commenters on Peters’ post who agreed with him and even commended him for confronting the workers at the stall.
MUIS weighed in on this by saying, “We would also like to encourage Muslims to be mindful of our words, even when we are being honest and true. In giving advice, Muslims should be polite and measured in our approach, as it will make others feel more comfortable and possibly make it easier for them to accept advice as taught by our Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.”
As a visitor to the pasar malam, was it right for him to publicly approach and chide a stranger for their actions? Let us know what you think in the comments!
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