President Akufo-Addo has eased the restrictions on public and social gatherings by announcing the commencement of religious activities from June 5.
This is in spite of the fact that the country’s recorded cases of the novel Coronavirus has hit 8,070.
In his 10th address to the nation on measures being taken against the spread of COVID-19, the President said effective 5th June, churches and mosques can start meeting with a maximum congregation of 100.
“An abridged format for religious services can commence. Twenty-five per cent attendance, with a maximum number of 100 congregants, can worship at a time in church or at the mosque, with a mandatory one metre rule of social distancing between congregants.
“. . in addition to mandatory wearing of masks, a register of names and contact details of all worshippers must be provided; maximum duration of one hour per service,” he said.
Pray For Ghana
President Akufo-Addo also entreated religious bodies to dedicate their first worship days to “prayers for the nation in these challenging times.”
“I would appeal to them, in the case of Christians, on the first Sunday of re-opening, [7th June], in the case of the Adventists, Saturday, [6th June], and in the case of Muslims, on the first Friday, i.e. ?al?t al-Jumu?ah [5th June], to dedicate their worship to prayers for the nation in these challenging times,” he noted.
Whiles revealing that the Minister for Religious Affairs will from tomorrow, Monday, 1st June, outline, in detail, the specific guidelines for the safe reopening of our churches and mosques, the president stressed that all religious institutions that are desirous of opening their premises to their members, must disinfect, fumigated and put in place the requisite logistics needed to guarantee safe opening and operation.
“They must work with the designated, regulatory bodies and undertake test runs of the protocols I have outlined,” he added.
E.I. 64 Until 31st July
However, he disclosed that other social gatherings such as sporting activities, political rallies, crusades, beaches, festivals, drinking bars, nightclubs are still prohibited.
“I have, by Executive Instrument, provided for these new directions, and extended the suspension of the remaining public gatherings, as set out in E.I. 64 of 15th March, until 31st July. In here, I refer to the suspension of sporting events, nightclubs, cinemas, drinking spots, bars, beaches, festivals, funerals, political rallies, and large religious gatherings such as crusades, pilgrimages and conventions,” the President indicated
Meanwhile, private burial directives are still in place with a maximum of 100 people.
Borders still closed
The country’s borders; land, sea and air remain closed until further notice, the President stated.
“Our border, by air, land and sea, remains closed until further notice for human traffic. However, given that there are Ghana residents stranded abroad, special dispensation is going to be given for their evacuation back to Ghana, where they will be subjected to the mandatory quarantine and safety protocols,” he said.