Metro & Crime

COVID-19: Diri orders sealed churches to be unsealed

Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has asked the state taskforce on COVID-19 to unseal worship centres that run afoul of measures imposed by the state government to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in the state.

He, however, urged the violators to retrace their steps as his administration derived no pleasure in shutting down churches.

Governor Diri gave the directive on Thursday at an enlarged meeting with religious leaders in the state.

At the meeting, which held at the Executive Chambers Government House, Yenagoa, Senator Diri charged the religious leaders to partner actively and spiritually with his administration to avert a rise of the pandemic through conscious awareness on the threat of the virus to their congregation.

His Acting Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Daniel Alabrah, quoted the governor as having expressed concern over the daily update from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) with the state recording 54 new cases on Tuesday.

He said all hands now have to be on deck to curtail the spread of the virus.

The governor also announced fresh guidelines for churches to adhere to.

His words: “All mid-week activities in all churches remain suspended till the end of COVID-19, including gatherings at home cells.

“For Sunday worship, hand sanitizers or running water and soap must be provided at the entrance of all churches.”

Responding on behalf of the clerics, the Bishop of Niger Delta West Diocese, Bishop Emmanuel Oko-Jaja, expressed satisfaction with the leadership of the governor in addressing and curtailing the spread of the virus since its outbreak in the state.


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