Ramadan: 4 Imams arrested for violating ban on gathering

April 27, 2020
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No fewer than four Islamic clerics have been arrested in Lagos State and Federal Capital Territory Abuja for violating the Federal Government-ordered lockdown in the two cities.

The culprits were arrested in mosques during Ramadan prayers with their followers.

Announcing the arrest on Sunday evening via Twitter, the Lagos State Police Command said the “Imam of Sheik Central Mosque, Mile 12” was arrested “for holding prayers in the Mosque with a large number of worshippers”.

The Police said the Imam would be charged to court.

Also, the FCT Administration Task Force on COVID-19 led by its Chairman, Ikharo Attah, in a video released via Twitter was seen enforcing the arrest at some mosques where three Imams were seen leading their congregation in Solat.

Attah said the erring religious leaders have been sent to one-month imprisonment with community service.

Addressing the erring Imams and their congregants shortly before making the arrests, Attah said, “We have not come here to do anything against what you believe. We understand clearly that this is the holy month of Ramadan. We also know by Islamic injunction the Qu’ran was clear. Qu’ran 2138 that oh ye who believe fasting by Allah is prescribed unto you as it was unto them before you, that you may seek piety and be righteous.

“But while Allah gives you the caveat to pray constantly in line with Quranic injunctions, it Allah was also very clear in Qu’ran chapter 4, verses 59 and 60 that oh ye who believe, you must obey Allah subu hana ta Allah. You must obey the messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, and you must obey all those whom Allah has given authority over you.”

The PUNCH reports that Lagos and Abuja have been on lockdown occasioned by the coronavirus pandemic since 11pm, March 30, as part of efforts to curb the spread of the novel infection.

According to the Nigeria Centre for disease control, Lagos and Abuja have recorded the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the country.

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