Wednesday, June 23, 2021

FCT minister bans prayers on Eid grounds

Rayyan Alhassan is a graduate of Journalism and Mass Communication at Sikkim Manipal University, Ghana. He is the acting Managing Editor at the Daily Nigerian newspaper, a position he has held for the past 3 years. He can be reached via [email protected], or, or @Rayyan88 on Twitter.
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The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Muhammad Bello, has banned eid prayers at the National Eid prayer ground along the Umaru Musa Yar’Adua Expressway.

Mr Bello made the disclosure in a statement on Monday, by his Chief Press Secretary, Anthony Ogunleye, as part of efforts to contain the outbreak of COVID-19.

According to the statement, the decision has arrived at a meeting of the FCTA and a delegation from the FCT League of Imams Initiative, led by its Chairman, Imam Dr. Tajudeen Adigun, who met Mr Bello to discuss the modalities for holding eid prayers for the upcoming Eid el-Fitr celebrations.

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“All worshippers are enjoined to hold eid prayers outdoors within the premises of their neighborhood Juma’at mosques. Indoor worship is to be limited to less than 50% of installed capacity.

“Religious authorities are advised to regulate the flow of people entering and exiting places of worship. All non-pharmaceutical intervention protocols of facial coverings, physical distancing and hand washing are to be observed

“All other eid celebrations and activities should be confined to homes as all public parks, recreation and entertainment centres are to be closed,” the statement read.

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The minister thanked the religious leaders for their cooperation in the battle against COVID-19, stressing that having gone through a first wave of the pandemic and a second wave that caused more fatalities.

Mr Bello said it was imperative to prevent a possible third wave as is being witnessed in some countries across the world.

“Consequently, based on presentations made by officials of the Health and Human Services Secretariat of the FCTA and the Implementation Guidelines for Phased Restriction of Movement issued by the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19 on Monday. 10th May 2021, we came up with the guidelines,” the minister stated.

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Speaking on behalf of the League, Mr Adigun said: “In Islam, you listen to experts, those who are specialists and those who have actually discussed with us are experts in the field of medical sciences.

“In Islam, you also abide with the commands of leadership.

“Based on this and what we are convinced of, we urge Muslim Ummah to also respect this stand of the Administration of the FCT by observing our Eid prayers within our localities.”

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