Two days to the celebration of the Eld el-Kabir by the Muslim faithful, the administration of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) yesterday said it had shut the National Eid prayer ground along the Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport.
This is to prevent prayers there during the festivities. New Telegraph learnt that the ban may not be unconnected with the fear that COVID-19 would escalate in the FCT should a large congregation be allowed for the prayers.
The FCT Minister, Mallam Muhammad Bello, directed that Muslim faithful should pray at their neighbourhood mosques and not think of congregating at the Eid ground.
Warning that the prayers and any other activities regarding the festivities in the mosque should not exceed one hour, Bello also said that religious leaders must ensure that all COVID-19 protocols were strictly observed. He said: “There will be no Eid prayers at the National Eid prayer ground on the Umaru Musa Yar’adua Expressway otherwise called Airport Road.
“All worshippers are enjoined to hold Eid prayers on the premises of their neighbourhood Juma’at mosques. Eid prayers should last for a maximum of one hour only between 8a.m. and 10a.m.
“All other Eid celebrations and activities should be confined to homes as the extant guidelines on the closure of public parks, recreation, entertainment and sporting areas still subsists.
“Religious authorities are advised to regulate the flow of people entering and exiting places of worship. All other health and safety protocols regarding places of worship as earlier issued by the FCTA remain in effect.”