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Religious leaders urged to scale up efforts in preventing spread of COVID-19

By IGIHE
On 5 August 2021 at 07:44

The Minister of Local Government, Jean Marie Vianney Gatabazi has urged religious leaders to mobilize believers on COVID-19 preventive measures and encourage them to participate in vaccination program being rolled out countrywide.

Gatabazi made the call on Wednesday 2021 during a consultative meeting between the Ministry of Local Government (MINALOC), officials from different provinces and Kigali City, security officials and representatives from the Inter-religious Council.

The meeting also assessed the council’s appeal to reopen churches.

The recent cabinet meeting held on 30th July 2021 reviewed existing COVID-19 preventive measures lifting lockdown in Kigali city and eight districts but places of worship remained among closed activities.

Despite these measures, believers have been arrested at different times congested at homes or gathered for prayers in forests violating COVID-19 containment measures.

For instance, 38 believers from Bugesera district were arrested on 18th July 2021 gathered for prayers at a hill in Mbyo. They are an addition to 239 people arrested the previous day on 17th July 2021 gathered for prayers at Kanyarira hill in Ruhango district among others.

Minister Gatabazi has requested church leaders and religious denominations to educate their followers on instituted health guidelines, encourage them to accept COVID-19 vaccines and advise them against illegal gatherings for prayers lest their life is exposed to risk.

He urged them to use different platforms life Radio, Television among others as they await new measures allowing the reopening of churches.

The Minister of Local Government, Jean Marie Vianney Gatabazi.

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