The possibility of having churches and mosques reopen in Lagos State has been ruled out by the government for now.
This is as it declared that the coast was not clear enough for that in view of the spread of COVID-19 in the state.
The position of the state government was given on Tuesday by the Commissioner for Home Affairs, Prince Anofiu Elegushi, on the sideline of the 2020 Ministerial Press Briefing held to celebrate the first year in office of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
The declaration contradicts the position of the Federal Government that said on Monday that churches and mosques could reopen in its gradual easing of the lockdown imposed to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Said Elegushi: “Even before the pronouncement by Federal Government, we have been having meetings with the religious leaders.
“We even had one with Lagos State Safety Commission, looking at the possibility of reopening of religious houses.
“We also had one with the leaders of the two faiths.
“And I want to tell you categorically that at that meeting, possibility of reopening religious houses was ruled out totally.
“They claimed that they cannot take such responsibility of ensuring that only 20 or 50 people are praying behind them.
“Like an Imam said, he doesn’t know what is going on at the back immediately he is leading a prayer.
“He said if more than 20 or 50 people are staying at his back, he is not going to take responsibility for their presence.
“So, in the meeting, we ruled out in totality the issue of reopening the religious houses until we have a clear coast for us to do so.
“The Federal Government mentioned it, but it never ruled out the state in achieving that pronouncement.
“So all states will have to look at possibility of doing so in their respective states.
“We all know Lagos is still having more figures.
“So definitely that will speak to our decision.”