The Federal Government has lifted the ban on religious gatherings across the country.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, announced this on Monday at the daily media briefing in Abuja.
Similarly, Akwa Ibom Government has approved the reopening of churches in the state on Sunday, June 7, 2020.
Mustapha said, “The PTF submitted its recommendations and the PRESIDENT has approved the following for implementation over the next four weeks spanning 2nd–29th June, 2020, subject to review-:
“Cautious advance into the Second Phase of the national response to COVID-19; application of science and data to guide the targeting of areas of on-going high transmission of COVID-19 in the country;
“Mobilisation of all resources at State and Local Government levels to create public awareness on COVID 19 and improve compliance with non-pharmaceutical interventions within communities; sustenance of key non-pharmaceutical interventions that would apply nationwide and include: ban of gatherings of more than 20 people outside of a workplace;
“Relaxation of restriction on places of Worship based on guidelines issued by the PTF and protocols agreed by state governments.”
Charles Udoh, the Akwa Ibom commissioner for Information and Strategy who broke the news in a statement to the media said the State Government was confident that CAN, being a body full of integrity, would do everything within its jurisdiction to ensure that all churches adhere strictly to these guidelines as violators will be prosecuted.
Udoh said a Joint Monitoring Team has been set up in each Senatorial District, comprising representatives of Government, Security Agencies and CAN.
He, however, stated that the ban on burials, weddings and indeed all forms of social gatherings” was still in force until further notice.
“Citizens and Residents are enjoined to observe all prescribed guidelines on religious and social gatherings as well as physical distancing while wearing face masks,” the statement added.
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) recommended the guidelines backed by an undertaking to comply and signed by representatives of all the blocs.