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“Morally obscene” music off-limits during Ramadan

Gambia has banned music, dancing and drumming during the holy month, warning impious music-makers will face "the full force of the law"

By IQ on 13 Jun 2016

Yahya Jammeh, The Gambia, United Nations, 2009

Gambian dictator Yahya Jammeh addresses the UN in 2009


image © United Nations/Erin Siegal

The government of the Gambia has outlawed music for Ramadan, warning citizens against engaging in “morally obscene things” during the holiest month in the Islamic calendar.

In a press release, the Gambia Police Force’s PR officer, Lamin Njie, listed “music, dancing and drumming” as activities that “Allah frowns on during the Holy Month” and said Gambians should “desist from such acts, otherwise they will be eventually apprehended and face the full force of the law without compromise”.

The state-owned Daily Observer welcomed the diktat as “wholly reasonable as it is sensible”, opining “the ban should be seen through the lens of guiding Muslims to the respectable, honourable path during a month that Allah dishes infinite blessings to the compliable faithful”.

The Gambia has been an Islamic state since December, when President Yahya Jammeh declared the Islamic Republic of The Gambia. Jammeh, who took power in a military coup in 1994, pulled the west African nation out of the Commonwealth of Nations in 2013, declaring it a “neo-colonial institution”.

Ramadan began at sundown on Sunday 5 June.

 


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