NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 23 — The Interfaith Council has capped religious gatherings at 120 minutes in measures aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19 at a time the country is grappling with a third wave of the pandemic.
The council’s chairperson Archbishop Anthony Muheria, while insisting on strict adherence to the containment measures, also advised places of worship to conduct services in the open and increase the number of services to decongest gatherings.
“The council wishes to insist that all congregants in places of worship must sanitise before and after the worship service. The religious leaders should ensure there is enough water and soap, or enough sanitizers in each place of worship,” he said during a media briefing on Tuesday.
The council said places of worship must ensure the temperature of attendants is checked and those with higher temperatures referred to a medical facility
Regarding funeral ceremonies, Archbishop Muheria urged Kenyans to avoid such gatherings except those of close family members. He further warned against serving food during burials.
“We continue to highlight that many of the infections are taking place in the funeral setting, we,” Archbishop Muheria said while issuing a reminder that the attendance in funeral will be restricted to 100 people.
The Interfaith Council also urged the Ministry of Health to provide information on COVID-19 vaccines as well as address doubts raised by the public on the vaccination program.
“We urge religious leaders to encourage our people, especially the elderly to take this second shield of protection by going to be vaccinated,” he added.
The Muheria-led council also urged county governments to provide financial assistance to local places of worship that will facilitate purchases of sanitizers, water, and soaps.
“We invite an even closer collaboration of both national and county governments with the religious bodies and leaders, this will help in sensitizations to the grassroots and also make a greater impact to a larger of Kenyans,” part of the statement issued by the council read.