The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Kaduna State Chapter, has appealed to Gov. Nasir El-Rufai to review the lockdown imposed due to the coronavirus.
The appeal by CAN comes after an earlier call by the Council of Imams and Ulamas on the state government for a review of the lockdown.
The CAN Chairman, John Hayab, a reverend, in a statement issued on Tuesday in Kaduna, appealed to El-Rufai to consider relaxing the lockdown on Fridays and Sundays to allow both Muslims and Christians to worship in Mosques and Churches.
He expressed CAN’s belief that the relaxation of the lockdown on those days would be used by adherents of both religions to achieve positive results.
“Places of worship can organise one or two worship sessions with few worshippers while observing physical distancing.
“Places of worship can provide soap, water, and hand sanitiser for worshippers to use before and after worship,’’ he said.
The cleric said the leaderships of the worship centres are prepared to ensure that worshippers comply with the safety protocol recommended for the containment of the virus.
Mr Hayab said allowing worship places to reopen would provide the opportunity for the people to be further sensitised to the need to adhere to the protocol put in place to stop the spread of the virus.
“The coming together of worshippers could enhance the provision of food items and other necessities of life to the needy in both Churches and Mosques.
“This will unite members and enable them to share ideas on the way forward for the state and the country as a whole.
“The most important thing that we will do both as Christians and Muslims would be to offer fervent prayers in our congregations for God to intervene and deliver humankind from the COVID-19 calamity.
“The CAN, Kaduna State Chapter appreciates the tireless efforts of the state government through the State Standing Committee on COVID-19 headed by the state’s Deputy Governor, Dr Hadiza Balarabe, for all that has been done to ensure that the spread of the deadly disease is curtailed,’’ the CAN chairman added.
He noted that since the COVID-19 lockdown, the state government through the State Standing Committee had initiated steps to find a lasting solution to the spread of the pandemic.
Mr Hayab added that the state government on its part had performed credibly through the combined efforts of health experts, security agencies, religious leaders, NGOs, and other stakeholders to cushion the effect of the pandemic.
He said the state chapter of CAN had solidly stood behind the state government in its policies since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country, and in Kaduna state in particular.