Synchronised steps among dancers make the sign of the cross, according to clerics in Malaysia’s Perak state.
It is not yet clear if the ban is legally binding, cleric Harussani Idris Zakaria was cited in a news report as saying.
Zakaria says that the dance’s origins are in Jamaica and was linked to spirit worship. “These elements are obvious reasons why it is not suitable for Muslims to take part in the dance,” he said, cited by Singapore’s New Straits Times. “Instead of poco poco, why not celebrate Malaysian culture and adopt a local dance?” he said.