COVID-19: FCTA enforcement team storms mega churches ahead of crossover night



The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has stormed some mega churches with sensitisation campaign owing to fears of crowd during crossover night.

The administration said, given the nature of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 already ravaging very worrisomely in FCT, and the known overcrowding tradition of worship centres during the crossover, it was necessary to appeal to religious groups to adopt the recommended health guidelines.

FCT minister’s Senior Special Assistant on Monitoring, Inspection and Enforcement, Ikharo Attah said the decision to visit mega churches that have large followership and tendencies for overcrowding, was to avert a situation capable of destroying stakeholders’ investments and efforts at containing the pandemic.

Attah appealed to the church leaders to introduce measures that will aid total compliance with both non pharmaceutical intervention and other health protocols during the crossover night worship.

He also warned that FCT Administration would hold church and religious leaders responsible for any breach, leading to health emergency in their domains.

Director Public Health Department of FCTA, Dr. Abduralman Sadiq, said the sensitisation visit became important, following the growing number of COVID-19 cases in Abuja.

Sadiq lamented that in spite of measures put in place, the pandemic was still hitting hard on the territory.

He disclosed that while COVID-19 Isolation centres in Abuja, hitherto emptied, were getting crowded as a result of the spike, one death was recorded on Thursday in one of the treatment centres.

Chairman FCT Chapter, Christian Association of Nigeriav(CAN), Rev. Samson Jonah, who was physically present when the team visited the First Baptist Church, Area 11, Garki, said the Association had directed all churches to limit gathering in their worship centres to half its capacity.

Jonah also noted that the Christian community in Abuja will continue to support government’s efforts, and will also intensify prayers for the elimination of the diseases.

The churches visited include The First Baptist Church, the Redeemed Christian Church of God Region 10 Headquarters, Wuse 2, and the Glory Dome of Dunamis International Gospel.