A group of Muslims in the Halifax area are upset after finding out hot dogs served at a community barbecue weren’t halal, even though the MLA for the area said they were.
Patricia Arab, Liberal MLA for Fairview-Clayton Park, declined to be interviewed about the matter, but provided a written statement apologizing for the mix-up of halal and haram.
“My intentions – and those of the organizers – were based solely on good faith and respect for Muslim values and beliefs. I in no way meant to offend anyone or diminish the sanctity of halal,” said Arab.
“I have reached out to members of the Muslim community to apologize for my role in the misunderstanding.”
“They said the MLA, she made a prayer over the hot dog and she said, ‘it’s halal now,’” says Alshanti. “For me, it is a big deal. I’m sure it’s not her intention to make fun of it, but it looks like that she wants to make fun of muslims about halal.”
Under Islamic law, a prayer must be said as the animal is slaughtered in order for meat to be considered halal.
“You have to slaughter it by hand and leave their blood to drain out,” explains Alshanti. The procedure must also be done by a Muslim. Arab is a Maronite Catholic.
Alshanti says the Muslims who ate the meat will be forgiven, but he feels a provincial politician living in a city with 20,000 Muslims should know better.
“It’s not a big sin if they don’t know, if it’s not intentional,” he says. CTV News reached out to the premier’s office for comment. A spokesperson said the office hasn’t received many calls on the matter, and the premier won’t be getting involved in this matter of halal meat.
Originally published on http://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/