- CAN has appealed to Lagos and Ogun state governments over lockdown of churches in Nigeria
- Samson Ayokunle, the president of CAN, urged the states to reopen churches without further delay
- Ayokunle said the continued lockdown on the places of worship in the country would no longer be tolerated
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Despite the rise in the cases of coronavirus in Nigeria, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), has urged Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos state, his counterpart from Ogun state, Dapo Abiodun, and other states where churches are still on lockdown to lift the ban on religious activities.
Channels TV reports that the CAN's president, Samson Ayokunle, made the call in a statement on Tuesday, July 7, by his special assistant on media and communications, Pastor Adebayo Oladeji.
Legit.ng gathered that he believes the continued lockdown order on the places of worship in the country, is no longer acceptable and cannot be reasonably justified.
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“Despite the directive given by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 with regards to the reopening of places of worship nationwide, some states like Lagos and Ogun are yet to allow worship places, especially churches, to be reopened. What sin have the places of worship committed?” he questioned.
Ayokunle further added: “CAN appeals to the Lagos, Ogun and other state governments where churches are still under lockdown to relax it for God’s sake.
“As much as we believe that COVID-19 deserves attention, it is our belief that the affected state governments would not turn a deaf ear to our quest but allow worship to return to places of worship.”
He noted that the leadership of CAN at all levels had agreed with the government on the need to close down places of worship, economy, schools, and every other facet of life following the sudden emergence of the coronavirus pandemic.
Ayokunle, however, said that with the reopening of the economy, especially the markets – both organised and the unorganised markets – along with the plan to reopen airports and schools, the closure of churches anywhere in the country was no longer tenable and acceptable.
The cleric also stressed that it is the opinion of the Christian body that while the government and other relevant stakeholders are working hard to get a cure for COVID-19, the church too has a role to play by seeking divine solutions as well.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that Nigeria's COVID-19 is now a step closer to 30,000 after 503 new cases were reported on Tuesday, July 7, in what brought the total infection figure in the country to 29,879.
It was reported that the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) which announced the new infections in a tweet on Tuesday, July 7, said 153 new cases were discovered in Lagos with Ondo state coming behind with 76 new cases.
In another report, CAN highlighted the conditions to be met by churches before reopening.
The national religious body said it expected churches to start reopening in the first week of June after meeting the conditions.
The guidelines were released by Ayokunle as he said the measures are put together to ensure the reopening of churches does not cause a spike in Covid-19 cases.
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