Religious

President Buhari to Mark Eid Prayers at Home

President Muhammadu Buhari will observe the Eid El-Kabir prayers with his family at home, just as he did during the Eid El-Fitr a little over two months ago.

This, in a statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the resident on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, is in line with advisories from the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA and the Presidential Task Force, PTF on COVID-19.

According to the statement, the President in wishing all Muslims a safe and happy Eid, reiterated the need to avoid large gathering as issued by the PTF protocols.

The statement further advises that where small groups choose to hold the Eid together, face masks are absolutely necessary, as is social distancing.

Advisedly, such prayers should hold outdoors and worshippers are encouraged to bring their own prayer mats, it says.

The statement adds that to stop the spread of the disease, the President will not be receiving Sallah homages by religious, community, party and government leaders and urges all citizens to observe the occasion as advised by state and local authorities.

In a related development, President Muhammadu Buhari has reiterated his call on Nigerians to continue to exercise patience and understanding over the inconveniences created by precautionary measures taken for Covid-19, especially the regulations on places of worship.

In his Sallah message to Muslims on the occasion of Eid-el-Kabir celebration, President Buhari said the outbreak of coronavirus has made it difficult for people to gather in places of worship as they are used to, urging worshipers to abide by the guidelines for safety of their lives, and loved ones.

He stated that the coronavirus has had devastating adverse impacts on social, economic and spiritual lives.

He noted that the preventive guidelines government introduced to contain the spread of this deadly disease have unfortunately limited people’s freedom to gather and worship in large numbers in Mosques and Churches.

President Buhari maintained that no elected government would intentionally take away its people’s religious freedom by limiting the number of people that will gather in worship centres at the same time.

Stressing that the guidelines are dictated by necessity in order to safeguard public health and should, therefore, not be perceived as infringement on people’s right to worship.

President Buhari commended the sacrifices of Muslims and Christians in abiding by the COVID-19 guidelines for the good of society, assuring that government shall continue to provide economic reliefs to the people to minimize the unintended hardships these guidelines have inflicted.

The President reminded worshippers that COVID-19 is a worldwide affliction with Churches and Mosques closed around the world, while social distancing has been imposed to safeguard public health.

While wishing Muslims a happy celebration, the President called on worshipers not to forget the symbolic significance of the sacrifices of the Eidel Kabir.

The President reminded Nigerians of his efforts to root out corruption in the country, stating that the efforts had so far brought a lot of changes in the country’s polity.

He appealed for more support and understanding as investigations are carried out on both legacy and fresh cases.

Bello Wakili

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