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169-year-old mosque in Melaka struck by lightning

New Straits Times logo New Straits Times 20/6/2022 Bernama
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JASIN: Four congregants at Masjid Jamek Datuk Andak Kampung Serkam Pantai escaped unscathed earlier today when concrete fragments from the top of the minaret fell into the main prayer hall of the 169-year-old mosque.

The incident was believed to be due to a lightning strike.

Speaking to reporters here today, mosque committee deputy chairman Zakaria Abu Bakar said he was in the prayer hall with the imam and a few others during the 6.45am incident.

Prior to this, 30 congregants had left the hall after performing Subuh prayers, he said.

"At the time, we heard very loud thunder and the electricity supply tripped. We also felt a little tremor, but only became aware of the incident after rainwater began pouring in from a hole in the roof caused by the incident.

"We found several pieces of concrete, one of which weighed 1.5 kg, as well as many small stone fragments on the floor."

Zakaria thanked the Fire and Rescue Department, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, representatives of the Chief Minister's Office and others who came by to inspect the mosque's condition.

In the meantime, he said he hoped that relevant parties such as the Melaka Museums Corporation and the Heritage Department would assess the safety of the structure for subsequent repairs as the mosque was gazetted as an Old Historic Land Monument under the Antiquities Act No. 168/1976 on March 27, 1980.

Meanwhile, Mohd Sufian Hashim, 43, who lives near the mosque, said he saw the incident through the window of his house after Subuh prayers today.

"I heard a very loud sound and the second time (it happened), I saw from a distance lightning striking the top of the mosque's minaret which caused sparks and some smoke," he said. – BERNAMA

© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd

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