Ekiti to reopen worship centres July 17, schools July 20

Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), Fayemi

Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti state announced on Tuesday night during a state-wide broadcast that worship centres in the state may resume services from July 17, subject to the fulfillment of some protocols.

This, Gov. Fayemi, said would be in line with the agreement reached between the state government and leaders of religious organisations in the state.

The governor who was speaking on the next stage in the state’s COVID-19 response, said arrangements were in top gear to ensure that pupils and students return to schools from July 20, as recommended by stakeholders in the education sector.

He said the two largest markets in Ado Ekiti, the Oja Oba and Bisi Market, hitherto shut would now have their lock-up shops opened, subject to compliance with protocols, stressing that street trading, make-shift stalls, kiosks and open display of wares in the said markets remain banned.

The governor said that the state government has taken a N2.5 billion life insurance policy of N2 million each for 500 frontline medical personnel involved in the COVID-19 assignment in the state in addition to the prompt payment of COVID-19 special allowances to qualified cadres.

Gov. Fayemi said security agencies and the state Ministry of Justice have been directed to henceforth arrest and prosecute any person caught in public places without face masks.

On conditions for public worship resumption from July 17, with Jumat service by Muslims and Christian worship from July 18 and July 19 respectively, Gov. Fayemi said social distancing of six feet must be observed and hand washing as well as use of face masks would be compulsory.

The governor said that maximum capacity for each building should be determined with the six feet social distancing principle, adding that the number must be displayed outside the building.

He said that a special task force would go round to assess the level of compliance and issue a certificate of readiness before worship centres can reopen, warning that any worship centre that violates the laid down protocols would be shut and the cleric prosecuted.

According to the governor, the resumption of school from July 20 would be in phases, starting with students in terminal classes (SS3, JSS3 and primary 6) to enable them prepare for their examinations, while other classes would be gradually absorbed as schools meet all requirements to accommodate them.

The governor said that a certificate of readiness showing that a particular school had adhered to all conditions required for school reopening would first be issued to all schools before they can reopen, while government would ensure that water, sanitizers, soaps and other facilities were in place.

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He said that he has directed that all schools be fumigated and kept safe for students before the resumption date.

On resumption of business at Oja Oba and Bisi Market, the governor said that the use of face masks and social distancing would strictly be enforced, while traders without permanent shops in the two markets would move to the new Awedele Market where more stalls have been prepared for them.

He warned that the ban on large gatherings of more than 20 persons, except on approved worship days would continue, adding that social, political or business gatherings like parties, burials, meetings, bars, viewing centres, sports meets must not exceed 20 persons and must be in line with COVID-19 protocols.

Gov. Fayemi said that unhindered movements would continue on Mondays to Fridays from 6.00 am to 8.00 pm, while the dusk-to-dawn curfew would be enforced 8.00 pm to 5.59 am seven days a week.

” There shall be a restriction of movement at weekends (Saturday and Sunday) until July 19 subject to the conditional relaxation of church attendance on Saturdays and Sundays,” he added.

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Ihesiulo Grace

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