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COVID-19: Reps Asks FG To Stop Open Worship

COVID-19: Reps Asks FG To Stop Open Worship The members of the House of Representatives have asked the Federal Government to issue a directive to religious houses to stop open worship. The resolution was passed by the lawmakers during plenary on Wednesday as a means to curb the spread of the Coronavirus. Other resolutions passed include, anyone entering the National Assembly should be tested and lawmakers should stop receiving visitors at the complex. Also, Nigeria should sign an agreement with Singapore and other certified countries for the production and supply of COVID-19 test kits. Following the resolutions passed, the lawmakers, however, voted massively against an amendment to urge the Federal Government to issue a stay at home directive to all schools for 14 days. The lawmakers further passed a resolution for the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire to brief the leadership of the House on a weekly basis, on COVID 19 updates. Lagos State Bans Religious Gathering Of Over 50 People The Lagos State Government has banned all religious gathering of over 50 people within the state. The decision was arrived at on Wednesday after a meeting of the Lagos State Government with religious bodies in the state, because of the increasing number of coronavirus cases in the country. The religious bodies include the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and Muslim leaders. Reading a communique after the meeting held at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre, in Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos, the Commissioner for Home Affairs, Prince Anofiu Elegushi said the groups agreed that all large religious gathering of over 50 people should be suspended immediately. He said the suspension would last for four weeks, with a necessary review carried out if need be. Elegushi added that a committee had been set up to monitor the enforcement of the suspension to ensure that both Muslims and Christians in the state abide by the decision. The 15-member committee comprises representatives of Muslims and Christians in the State. Elegushi also said the meeting agreed that the state government should embark on massive sensitisation of people at the grassroots on the need to embrace proper hygiene. He added that the meeting agreed that all health workers in the state should up their games in the battle against Coronavirus. Elegushi stated that it was agreed that the Federal Government should shut down borders, especially land borders to checkmate the influx of foreigners into Lagos in order to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. The commissioner said the state government would immediately embark on massive sensitisation of residents to be more aware of the danger posed by the coronavirus. Elegushi appealed to Lagosians to desist from handshaking and to always wash their hands with soap and water or make use of sanitisers. Chief Imam of Lagos State, Sheikh Oluwatoyin Abou-Nolla, said the action of the state government was commendable, urging all Muslim leaders to abide by the decision and to also make personal hygiene a priority. The CAN Chairman, Apostle Alexander Bamgbola on the other hand, said the nation was at a critical point, stressing that since the outbreak of the coronavirus, Christians had been praying. “We are at a critical moment in Nigeria, since we heard this, we have been praying. We have listened carefully to one another, particularly the government. The responsibility of every government is to protect the lives of the people,” he said. “We must be proactive and take preventive measures. It is no longer the issue of religion but survival. We are going to accelerate the education of our people. We must listen to the instruction of the government and take the instruction seriously. We agree with the action of the government”. COVID-19: Ogun Government Bans High-Density Gatherings Further to measures so far taken to ramp up its efforts to contain the spread of the coronavirus, the Ogun State Government has banned high-density gatherings. In a statement on Wednesday, the Ogun government said it found expedient to announce some additional measures including an immediate ban of all high-density gatherings that would bring together 50 or more persons in the same place, such as social clubs, halls, cinemas, night clubs, restaurants, cafes, and sports arenas. According to the statement by Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Ogun State, Kunle Somorin, this measure will be in effect for the next 30 days in the first instance. Mr Somorin further stated that this restriction has to be enforced without prejudice to people’s fundamental rights to association and movement because the safety of the people and their welfare are priorities that cannot be toyed with. He assured that the Government will continue to engage all the stakeholders, including religious leaders to sensitise the populace on the need to maintain social distancing and collective effort to combat this pandemic. “The Government will continue the surveillance initiatives and intensify sensitisation onCOVID-19. “This is more so given the peculiarity of its location as the Nation’s Gateway State and its industrial capital. Our epidemiologists and other health workers are working round the clock with Federal agencies and international development agencies to stop the spread of coronavirus. “In view of the recent confirmed cases in the country, Governor Abiodun reassures the populace that no stone will be left unturned to ensure that the state is prepared at all times to respond appropriately. He further encourages people to maintain a high level of suspicion and report any suspected case to the appropriate authorities,” the statement partly read. NYSC Suspends Ongoing Orientation Course The ongoing orientation for the National Youth Service has been cut short by the Ministry of Youth and Sports. The minister, Mr Sunday Dare says this is part of the Federal Government’s precautionary measure against the spread of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19). The orientation programme started on March 10 and was supposed to end on March 30. All corps members are to be paid and sent to their places of primary assignment. The Director-General of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim, is expected to give more details.