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Religious Leaders Urged To Help Fight Covid-19

Imams and Sheikhs from Marsabit Central Sub-county have been asked to ensure that activities in mosques operate strictly under the Covid-19 containment measures.

They were reminded that the disease was spreading fast in the countryside, Marsabit among them and asked to take a leading role in the fight against the pandemic as it has dawned that awareness about the disease was low in the area.

The Deputy County Commissioner (DCC) Mr Patrick Muriira, during a meeting in his boardroom with 20 Imams in charge of mosques within Marsabit town and its pre-urban areas, said it had been noted with concern that the Covid-19 health protocols were not being followed as the faithful attended prayers during this Ramadhan period.

Muriira spelt out the importance of observing regulations at all times which include attendance of one third capacity of mosques, wearing of face masks, provision of water in dispensers, sanitizers and social distancing.

The DCC cautioned the religious leaders that they would be held individually responsible in the event that the government guidelines were violated in the places of worship they were in charge of.

“The government will not compromise on the containment measures and the presidential order and so prayers should be conducted within the hours outside the curfew,” he warned, adding that there was need for the faithful to be made aware of the dangers in breaking the Covid-19 rules.

The Imams informed the Sub-County Task Force on Covid-19, that the majority of their faithful do not believe that the disease existed and called for help from the authorities.

A section of Imams from Marsabit Central Sub-County during a meeting on the corona virus pandemic held at the Marsabit Central Deputy County Commissioner (DCC’s) Boardroom. Photo by Sebastian Miriti

The state of ignorance and especially among the youth concerning the deadly virus was of great concern among the imams and sheikhs who called for an awareness campaign and the involvement of the law enforcement agents.

Muriira tasked Chiefs and their Assistants with the duty of making sure that information about the disease and adherence to the guidelines reached the residents.

The Sub-County Police Commander (SCPC), Mr Johnson Wachira appealed to Marsabit town residents to take personal responsibility in protecting themselves against the killer disease by following the containment measures.

Wachira pointed out that many residents were not wearing face masks when walking on the town streets but were instead carrying them on their hands, pockets and handbags or putting them on inappropriately.

“Let us wear face masks and observe other guidelines because it matters for our health and not because of fear of being arrested,” advised the SCPC.

The meeting decided that the religious leaders will be provided with copies of the containment measures and executive orders on the Covid-19 following requests by the imams, saying they were not aware of the guidelines.

By Sebastian Miriti

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