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COVID-19: Coronavirus: Wike makes U-turn, cancels Easter services in Rivers

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Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has cancelled the concession granted to churches to hold Easter Church services in the state.

Recall that the Catholic Church in Rivers State on Friday, asked its members to stay safe and observe Easter Sunday at home.

Wike had relaxed the lockdown order in the state on Thursday.

A statement he signed had said the decision was taken to enable Christians to observe their religious obligations during Easter.

But the Catholic church in reaction said in view of the threat COVID-19 poses, it was better to be careful and continue to observe social distancing, the established measure of preventing the pandemic.

The letter read in part, “With prayerful meditation on the Holy Week, I sincerely thank you our priests and lay faithful for adhering so far to our Diocesan directives/guidelines for the celebration of the Holy Week.

However, reacting the Rivers State Government, in a statement signed by its commissioner for Information, Paul Nsirim, on Saturday, disclosed that the concession has been cancelled.

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According to Nsirim, the decision was reached after due consultation.

“The Rivers State Government has cancelled the concession granted churches to hold Easter Church Services with their full congregations.

“This decision was taken after due consultations with eminent clergymen, well-meaning Nigerians and civil society groups.

“For the avoidance of doubt, churches should stick to the 50 persons per service to maintain social distancing,” the statement added.

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