Buhari, Governors Strike 5 Point Deal On Worship Centres Ban
Amid mounting scare over the ban lift on religious and social centres ahead of Sallah, President Muhammadu Buhari and governors on Thursday, May 21, reportedly sealed a five-point deal on the next direction in the fight against coronavirus.
It was earlier reported earlier that at least six governors in the north, including Abdullahi Umar Ganduje of Kano, lifted the ban on religious gatherings.
Their action was widely criticised as being against the position and advice of the presidential task force on Covid-19 and the Nigeria Centre Disease Control.
On Friday, May 23, President Buhari and Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) were reported to have met where they agreed that gatherings in mosques or churches and the observance of Eid-el-Fitr prayers will not exceed 50 people at a time.
According to The Nation, the chairman of NGF, Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti state, confirmed meeting with the president and also the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) led by Rev. Supo Ayokunle
Fayemi also spoke to the president of the Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Sultan Sa’ad Abubakar, over the potential relaxation of lockdown and ban lift on religious gathering.
The governors, after the meeting, however, maintained that position of NGF on public gathering has not changed and no governor would go against the decision.
Meanwhile, a governor from the Northwest region has disclosed the five-point agenda stricken with the president will be applicable to both the Christians and Muslims.
“In easing the lockdown, we presented a five-point agenda to the President, namely restriction on inter-state movements; internal relaxation of stay-at-home order within a time frame; compulsory wearing of masks; and public gathering, be it social, political or religious, not exceeding 50,” the governor was reported to have said on the outcome of the Thursday meeting with the president.
According to a source, the governors who lifted the ban did so for a political reason as they do not want to offend “both the crescent and the cross.”