CAN insists on crossover services — despite curfew in Edo

CAN insists on crossover services — despite curfew in Edo


Church leaders in Edo State have vowed to hold crossover services on Thursday December 31, 2020 despite the prevailing security situation in the State.

It has become a norm for churches across the world hold crossover services on December 31, every year to usher in the New year.

On Wednesday last week, the Edo State governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki at the behest of the federal government, reviewed curfew from 12a.m to 4am daily, with the exemption Thursday December 31, 2020, amidst second wave of Covid-19 pandemic.

He also reintroduced restrictions and reactivation of disease surveillance and management protocols, including public health and safety guidelines to fortify the State government’s efforts at flattening the curve of the second wave of the virus.

The Governor emphasized the use of facemasks now mandatory in public places; schools shut till Jan 18, 2021.

“In line with the Federal Government directive, we have adjusted our curfew to now begin from 12 mid-night to 4 am daily, beginning from today, December 23, 2020, except on December 31st, 2020”, Obaseki said in a broadcast.

But, the Secretary of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Edo State chapter, Pastor Humphrey Iriabe, insisted that the exemption by the government, did not restrict churches from holding cross services on Thursday.

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Speaking on the development in a telephone interview with our Correspondent in Benin, the Cleric said, the exemption of Thursday December 31, 2020 given by the Government, did not restrict churches in Edo State from holding cross services.

“CAN monitoring team has been going round churches to check the level of compliance, nobody is allowed to roam about the street past 12am”, he said.

But, we advice churches not to hold long services. While doing that, they must adhered to strictly to Covid-19 regulations.

According to him, “churches can hold short crossover services in line with Covid-19 protocols, but, advised church leaders not to be complacent.

“No worshipers must remain in churches until 6a.m the following day”, he said.

Iriabe, commended Governor Godwin Obaseki for not shutting down the State in the wake of the 2nd wave of Covid-19 pandemic.

“We will be having crossover services. But, we encourage that such meetings should be brief and that there should be physical distancing and observe strictly Covid-19 guidelines.

“The Governor told us to educate our followers when he held a virtual meeting with us.

“The curfew means that your should not be found roaming the street. People should be in inside the church.

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“The Governor has been very magnanimous with us…He does not want to coerce anybody”, he said.

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