Churches, Mosques in Ekiti Remain Closed, Says Commissioner

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By Victor Ogunje

The Ekiti State Government has restated its position that all worship centres across the state remain closed to prevent the escalation of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The government also said it would on Thursday commence the testing of its molecular laboratory to boost the state’s testing capacity.

Speaking at the Covid-19 press briefing in Ado Ekiti Wednesday, the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Mojisola Yaya-Kolade, said the state still has six patients after four were discharged from the isolation centre recently, having tested negative twice.

Yaya-Kolade said: “We have met with the religious leaders and what we said was that churches and mosques remain closed. We have met and deliberated and the decision to reopen will be made as we see that we have enough scientific evidence which shows that it is safe to reopen.

“We don’t want to open and later say we want to close our worship centres. A lot of things happen in churches like handshaking, embracing, clustering and taking of Holy Communion together, all these must be resolved before we can say we want to open our churches.”

The commissioner said all the patients at the isolation centre are stable, adding that those on oxygen supplementation had been taken off and can now breathe on their own.

“Two of the six still being isolated have turned negative. We are awaiting the second negative for them to be discharged.

“We will begin pilot testing tomorrow (Thursday) at the molecular laboratory that we established. Everything is set for the commencement of the large scale testing.

“We are happy that there is no community spread in Ekiti. There is even decline and we have to keep this tempo going,” she said.

The coordinator of Covid-19 Task Force in Ekiti State, Prof. Bolaji Aluko, stated that the security situation is still intact with no major breaches at the borders.

“The guidelines for the bringing of corpses to Ekiti still remain the same. Whoever wants to do any burial must get a death certificate to obtain clearance at the Ministry of Health.

“The use of masks is still very imperative at this point, because it will help in curtailing the spread, while the government is receiving palliatives from major partners and distributing to the residents to cushion the effect of the relaxed lockdown on them,” Aluko said.