Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu made the announcement at a press briefing at government house, Marina, Lagos, on Thursday. According to the Governor, while Muslim Jummat services are allowed to resume on June 19, the Christian worship centers are free to begin on June 21. It is however restricted to attendance to people between the ages of 15 and 64. The governor said children below age of 15 and senior citizens over the age of 65 should not be allowed at religious gatherings restricted to Fridays and Sundays.
On Monday, the federal government lifted the ban on religious gatherings across the country, subject to local arrangements by the state authorities.
The government had imposed the ban two months ago to check the spread of coronavirus.
Laos State did not subscribe to the federal schedule after the ban was lifted. The Lagos State commissioner for home affairs, Anofiu Elegushi, explained that reopening of worship centres would not be possible till Lagos State completes local arrangements in conjucrion with the religious bodies.
Lagos has a total of 5,440 coronavirus patients, the highest in the country.
The commissioner had said the government had held several meetings with some religious leaders who agreed that worship centres should be closed until “the coast is clear”.
“Even before the pronouncement by the federal government, we have been having meetings with the religious leaders, we even had one with safety commission, looking at the possibility of reopening of religious houses,” he said.
“We also had one with the leaders of the two faith and I want to tell you categorically that at that meeting, the possibility of reopening religious houses was ruled out totally.
“They claimed that they cannot take such responsibility of ensuring that only 20 or 50 people are praying behind them. Like an Imam said he doesn’t know what is going on at the back immediately he is leading a prayer.
“He said if more than 20 or 50 people are staying at his back he is not going to take responsibility for their presence.”