Volunteers from the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice (Haia) claimed they have reached agreements with malls in Yanbu to ban female cashiers from working there.
They announced the news on their Twitter account.
However, a management official from one of the malls, who did not want to be identified, told Al-Hayat newspaper there had been no such agreement and that the volunteers were banned from entering his mall.
He said: “We did not have any visitors from this group in the past few days. No one spoke to the management and their tweets are incorrect information.
“We are the mall’s management, therefore, we have nothing to do with recruitment as this is our tenants’ responsibility.”
Since the volunteers are not working in an official capacity, mall managers have tried to keep them away from breaching security.
They have forbidden them from taking pictures or even speaking to the female cashiers.
The official expressed his shock over the tweets that accused the mall managements of not sticking to their Islamic duties.
He said he wished the Haia volunteers would visit the mall properly and see how women were sticking to their religious duties as requested by the authorities.
There were also tweeters who criticized the Haia volunteers’ actions and supported the idea of having women working as cashiers and in other jobs.
A few months ago the same situation occurred in Jeddah, where residents criticized the idea of women working, describing it as sinful. The problem does not lie with women working, it lies with people getting used to the idea and adapting to the changing situation, some of the tweets said.
Most people expressed their support for women working as cashiers.
One tweeted: “Unofficial forces which scare women looking for jobs to fulfill their needs is not related at all to religion.”
Another tweeted: “There won’t be any development or evolution. Instead of growing we are only going backwards.”