Gov. Gboyega Oyetola of Osun on Wednesday ordered partial reopening of worship centres in the state for two weeks.
Oyetola, in a meeting held with Christian and Muslim religious leaders in Osogbo, said the decision to reopen worship centers partially was in response to the leaders’ request.
He also said that the reopening was due to Federal Government resolve to lift ban on religious activities.
The governor said the state government had prepared guidelines that must be followed to forestall possible spread of the virus as a result of the reopening of worship centres.
Oyetola said further actions by the government would be determined by the effect of compliance level to the guidelines by churches and mosques during the two-week period.
He also said that only regular church services of not more than one hour and maximum of two services would be allowed.
”Jumat service including khutbah (sermon) and prayers must not exceed 20 minutes.
”Vulnerable individuals such as those from age 65 and above and people with underlying ailments such as tuberculosis and diabetes were to continue worshipping at their respective homes,” Oyetola said.
He also directed that all church and mosque premises be fumigated to ensure that the environment are free of virus and other infectious diseases.
“Worshipers are to keep reasonable space in churches and mosques and no worship centre must be filled to capacity during any service and solat, respectively.
“Attendance at any service or solat must not exceed one-third capacity of the church or mosque.
“There should be provision of washing facilities or sanitisers for worshipers before entering the churches and mosques.
“Also, use of face mask is important, sharing of worship devices such as microphones and other musical gadgets should be discouraged. Water and food distribution during service should not be allowed.
“Worshippers must avoid exchange of banters and social distancing must be strictly observed.
”Windows in churches and mosques should be opened during worship for ventilation.
“Signage and notices should be placed at strategic locations to remind worshippers of best hygiene practices to be observed,” the governor said.
He also mandated churches and mosques to provide thermometers to check temperature of worshippers, adding that whoever has high temperature should not be allowed into the worship centres.
The governor added that vigils and children activities remain suspended, and that worship centres with support of security operatives should set up taskforce to enforce compliance with measures put in place by the government.
He, however, appreciated the leadership of both religions for their cooperation and understanding since the lockdown began in the state.
“We seek your continued cooperation so that we can together save our people from this deadly outbreak,” the governor said.
NCDC records 189 new COVID-19 cases, total now 57,145
The NCDC made this known on its official twitter handle on Saturday.
“As at Sept. 19, 2020, 189 new confirmed cases and one death was recorded in Nigeria.
“Till date, 57,145 cases have been confirmed, 48,431 cases have been discharged and 1,095 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory,” it said.
The agency stated that the 189 new infections were reported from 15 states of the federation.
“Lagos (70), Plateau (37), FCT (24), Kaduna (19), Rivers (12), Oyo (5), Ogun (4), Ebonyi (3), Katsina (3), Ondo (3), Osun (3), Imo (2), Yobe (2), Ekiti (1), Nasarawa (1),” it said.
The agency said that cloth masks provide protection when properly worn and cared for.
“Wear mask covering your nose and mouth, handle mask with clean hands and wash cloth face masks after each use.
“MaskOnNaija with other preventive measures. Learn how to make your own face mask: covid19.ncdc.gov.ng/media/files/DI… ,” it advised.
“TakeResponsibility and adhere to all non pharmaceutical preventive measures of COVID-19 if you must travel,“ it said.
Edited By: Tayo Ikujini/Sadiya Hamza
Banditry: Lawmaker urges FG to deploy more security to Sokoto
A Member of the House of Representatives, Alhaji Yusuf Kurdullah has urged the Federal Government to deploy more security personnel to Gudu and Tangaza Local Government Areas of Sokoto State to protect residents from recurring attacks by bandits.
Kurdullah who was reacting to the recent attack by bandits at Gidan Madi in Tangaza LGA, made the call while briefing newsmen in Sokoto on Saturday.
News Agency of Nigeria recalls that the Police had confirmed the death of a Divisional Police Officer and an Inspector during the Gidan Madi attack by bandits dressed in military uniform.
The police also said about 100 gunmen attacked the town.
The lawmaker who represents Gudu/Tangaza Federal Constituency, said that the bandits had in recent times, also attacked many villages and towns in the two local government areas, where a number of innocent citizens were kidnapped or brutally killed.
He however, commended the dedication of security personnel on ground, but said more should be deployed to save the people from further attacks.
Kurdullah pledged to support all efforts to ensure the security of lives and properties, not only in the area but across the country.
He urged people of the area to remain law abiding and support security agencies with useful information to help in restoring peace and stability in the area.
Edited By: Maharazu Ahmed
Nigerians gifted with exceptional confidence, resilience, mental acuity – Osinbajo
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo says Nigerians are gifted with exceptional attributes of confidence, resilience and mental acuity.
He said that the attributes were best demonstrated in how Nigerians exceled even in other countries in sciences, medicine and politics.
Osinbajo’s spokesman, Laolu Akande, in a statement on Saturday in Abuja, said the vice president delivered the keynote address at the 111th Founders’ Day Lecture of King’s College, Lagos.
According to Osinbajo, teaching young people Integrity, innovation and hard work is the foundation of a good society.
“Teaching young people that there are huge rewards from creativity, innovation with a culture of integrity in business and personal life, coupled with hardwork and diligence, is the foundation of a good and prosperous society.
“When people are nurtured in the notion that rent-seeking or the prebendal capture of wealth or benefit by access to power is the path to success, then the society will not prosper.
“A few will capture all the resources, everyone else will be poor or on their way there.”
Citing Edward Banfield, American Political Scientist, Osinabjo explained that the exceptional attributes did not free people from the moral basis of a backward society, which was the self-interested, family-centric society where often the public good was sacrificed.
He said that while receiving an education, the mind of a young person must be lifted up beyond self as education must teach the primacy of community, of the good and the well-being of the collective over self.
The Vice President said that the educational design and content must take into account, the current moral and social circumstances, as well as the physical and mental constraints we face as a people.
“There must be, as a rule, a prevailing moral standard, corruption or deviance must be the exception, not the rule.
“Concerns faced at the lower levels of our society; the problems of out-of-school children and the huge deficit in the education of girls,” he said.
For her part, Amina Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed, who was the guest speaker, commended the Federal Government’s response to COVID-19 through the Economic Sustainability Plan.
Mohammed said that scaling up infrastructure for connectivity will be crucial as well as access to digitalised curricula, digital skills training for teachers and students, and methods to protect privacy.
Other dignitaries at the event included the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, who virtually-delivered a goodwill message from President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Security Adviser, retired Maj.–General Babagana Monguno.
The Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, Lagos State Commissioner for Education, Mrs Folashade Adefisayo and the former Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido II, among others also featured.
Edited By: Felix Ajide
Cash Transfer: Zamfara to dismiss 10 Facilitators for extortion
The Zamfara Unit of the Federal Government Conditional Cash Transfer Programme, has said that it will dismiss 10 Facilitators in two local government areas in the state for extorting money from beneficiaries.
The Head of State Cash Transfer Unit, Alhaji Sani Marafa stated this in Gusau on Saturday at a three day step down training for Local Government Facilitators of the programme.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that the training was organised by the State Cash Transfer Unit in collaboration with the National Cash Transfer Office (NCTO), Abuja.
Marafa said 10 facilitators of the programme from Kaura-Namoda and Tsafe LGAs were found extorting money from beneficiaries in areas assigned to them.
“They were caught conniving with the payment agents extorting money from beneficiaries.
“It is very disappointing, we are going to dismissed them from this work and any body found conniving with them will also be sanctioned”, Marafa said.
He also expressed dismay over alleged collection of N1000 and N2500 from beneficiaries by some officials, saying that his office will collaborate with security agents to investigate the issue.
He called on the beneficiaries not to give a kobo to anyone before accessing their monthly stipends of N5,000 from the federal government.
He cautioned that anybody found collecting money from beneficiaries of the programme will face the wrath of the law.
According to him, the federal government has so far disbursed over N5.6 billion to 131,000 beneficiaries across six LGAs in the state.
Earlier, the National Training Officer of the programme, Mr Kola Solomon said that the training was aimed at equipping the beneficiaries on Savings and Group Mobilisation.
￼”It is expected for every beneficiary of the programme to be saving,” he said, adding that the programme is focused on cash transfer assistance and capacity building at the community level.
According to him, the cash assistance is usually followed by capacity building to ensure that the beneficiaries utilise the funds given to them in line with the aims and objectives of the programme.
“We realised that giving the beneficiaries N5,000 monthly is not enough to pull them out of poverty except if we train them on behavioural change.
“The 163 participants of this training from six LGAs are expected to go back and cascade what they have learnt to the beneficiaries at the community level.
“We want our beneficiaries to imbibe the culture of saving so that they would be forming groups in form of either contributions or cooperatives”, he said.
He urged the participants to be attentive, so that they will learn and understand the concept of the programme.
Edited By: Maharazu Ahmed