Reopen all churches now, CAN tells state governments
The President, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Reverend Dr Samson Ayokunle, has called on all state governments that are yet to reopen churches to do so now as the continued lockdown order on places of worship is no longer acceptable and reasonably justified.
The CAN President said despite the directive given by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 with regards to the re-opening of places of worship nationwide, some states like Lagos and Ogun are yet to allow worship places, especially churches, to reopen.
What sin have the places of worship committed? he wondered.
This is contained in a statement signed and issued by the Special Assistant, (Media and Communications) to the CAN President, Pastor Adebayo Oladeji.
The statement said “with the sudden emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) at all levels, agreed with the government on the need to close down places of worship, economy, schools and every other facet of life.
“But 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 is no longer tenable and acceptable.
“In what way are the open and roadside markets more organised than the church which warranted their opening? Is it not our members in the places of worship that go to markets and other sectors opened?.
Why are they allowed to go to markets and not allowed to go to places of worship? Is it because the marketers cannot contract the COVID-19 virus in the markets and airports?”
The CAN President, however, said, “it is our opinion that while the government and other relevant stakeholders are working hard to get a cure for the COVID-19 pandemic, the Church too has a role to play by seeking divine solutions as well”.
CAN appealed to the Lagos, Ogun and other state governments where churches are still under lockdown to relax it.
“As much as we believe that COVID-19 deserves attention, it is our belief that the affected state governments will not turn a deaf ear to our quest but allow worship to return to places of worship”, the statement added.