Continuous closure of churches by some state is unacceptable and unreasonable – CAN

July 8, 2020
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President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Reverend Samson Ayokunle, has said that the continuous closure of worship centres by some state government is ”unacceptable and unreasonable”. 

Several state governments closed worship centers as part of measures to contain the spread of Covid-19 in their states. While some states have reopened and issued guidelines for worshipers to adhere to, some others like Lagos and Ogun state governments are yet to reopens worship centers.

In a statement released by his Special Assistant, (Media and Communications), Pastor Adebayo Oladeji, the CAN boss said it is unacceptable for these state governments to continue to lockdown churches.

“The President, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), His Eminence, Rev Dr Samson ‘Supo Ayokunle, on behalf of the Association, has called on all State governments that are yet to reopen churches under their watches to do so now because the continued lockdown order on the places of worship is no longer acceptable and reasonably justified.

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 be reopened. What sin have the places of worship committed?

With the sudden emergence of the coronavirus pandemic, the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) at all levels, agreed with the government on the need to close down the places of worship, economy, schools and every other facet of life.

But with the reopening of the economy, especially the markets (both organized and the unorganized 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 opened and roadside markets more organized than the church which warranted their opening?

Is it not our members in the places of worship that do go to markets and other sectors opened? Why are they allowed to go to markets and disallowed from going to places of worship? Is it because the marketers cannot contact the virus in the markets and airports?

It is our opinion that while the government and other relevant stakeholders are working hard to get cure for the COVID-19 pandemic, the Church too has a role to play by seeking for divine solutions as well” the statement read in part

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