PM Lee Hsien Loong joins residents of Jurong for breaking of fast

(From left)  Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Masagos Zulkifli and chief executive of Muis, Hj Abdul Razak Maricar, during the iftar at Masjid Maarof in Jurong West on June 7, 2018.
(From left) Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Masagos Zulkifli and chief executive of Muis, Hj Abdul Razak Maricar, during the iftar at Masjid Maarof in Jurong West on June 7, 2018.ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

SINGAPORE - The Maarof Mosque in Jurong West was a hive of activity on Thursday evening (June 7), as Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Masagos Zulkifli joined 700 people for iftar, or the breaking of fast.

Together with residents in the area, and religious, community and grassroots leaders, they feasted on a spread of rice and traditional Malay dishes like sambal goreng as well as assorted kueh.

Before the meal, Mr Lee was given a tour of the $16.8-million mosque, which opened in late 2016 and is one of the largest in Singapore.

The four-storey mosque has a floor area of 2,500 sq m and can accommodate 4,500 worshippers.

It boasts features like signs in Braille and special listening zones in the prayer halls to cater to congregants and visitors with disabilities.

Mr Masagos, who is also the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, told reporters on the sidelines of the event that he was glad to see people of different religions and races taking part in the iftar.

"This is a very special way how Muslims in Singapore celebrate something significant not just among themselves but also with everybody," said the minister who took over the Muslim Affairs portfolio in May, after his predecessor Yaacob Ibrahim retired from the Cabinet.

"This is how we can continue to maintain and grow our relationship with every community."