Lagos State Government has enjoined all residents to continuously observe social distancing rule in all religious houses and worship centres in compliance with directives to contain the spread of COVID-19 and the Federal Government’s lockdown order in Lagos State.
The Honourable Commissioner for Home Affairs, Prince Olanrewaju Anofiu Elegushi, made this known while reacting to questions from reporters during an inter-ministerial press briefing held at the JJT Park, Alausa, to brief residents on the continued efforts of the State Government on mitigate the spread of the coronavirus disease in Lagos.
Elegushi noted that prior to the lockdown order of the Federal Government, religious leaders and groups in Lagos State had agreed to shut down worship centres and restrain worshippers from congregational worship for a period of four weeks subject to periodic mutual review.
He, however, observed that considering the number of infected cases currently being handled at various isolation centres across the State, the government, for now, does not see the possibility of allowing religious gatherings until the medical practitioners, especially the Ministry of Health, give the nod in order to prevent an epidemic.
The Commissioner noted that after the lockdown order is lifted by the Federal Government, all worship centres would be disinfected and certified free of the virus before worshippers are allowed to reconvene in an environment that guarantees their safety.
He stated further stated that the Ministry of Home Affairs, in conjunction with other Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), is working out modalities for disinfecting worship centres as well as facilitating proper training of religious leaders on regular disinfection of their centres.
Prince Elegushi maintained that since both main religions in the State encourage body contact and handshakes, it is imperative for any responsible government to take the measures Lagos has taken in order to save lives and protect its citizens.
While felicitating with Christians who are celebrating Easter, the Commissioner advised that all ceremonies for Easter must be observed indoors in view of the present situation across the Lagos metroplolis.