We won’t relax ban on religious gatherings for now despite pressures, says Makinde

Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, on Monday said despite pressures from various clerics on the state government to relax ban on religious gatherings over the coronavirus pandemic, the government has no plan for now to relax the ban.

According to the governor, based on the expert advice which indicated that transmission of coronavirus occurs more easily in enclosed spaces, the state government cannot at this time relax the ban on religious and other gatherings.

He however said the state government would be meeting with religious leaders before the end of this week to deliberate on when reopening of religious places will be possible.

The governor said: “Regarding our directives on social distancing during this pandemic, we have received requests from religious leaders about relaxing the ban on gatherings to allow religious services hold.

“We are currently in an accelerated phase in the transmission of COVID-19 in Oyo State and the expert advice is that transmission occurs more easily in enclosed spaces. So, we cannot at this time relax this directive.

“However, the experts are carrying out a risk situation analysis and will be sending in their report before the end of May and this will determine our next steps.

“Therefore, we will be meeting with religious leaders before the end of this week to see how and when reopening of religious places will be possible.”

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