Residents of the ancient commercial city of Kano celebrated the Eid El Fitr peacefully as thousands of Christian and Muslim worshippers trooped out to their various places of worship to observe their religious rites.
Muslims as early as 8 a.m. in their large numbers trooped to their various Eid prayer ground across the five Emirate councils to mark the Eid El Fitr.
Various denomination of Christian churches also opened for service as worshippers observed the Sunday service, after over one month of intense lockdown.
Residents in their happy mood extolled Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje for lifting the lockdown in places of worship as they also promised to continue to comply with the protocols of COVID-19.
Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje; his Deputy, Dr. Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna; the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero and other top government functionaries, chieftains of the All Progressive Congress (APC) were at the Kofar Mata Eid prayer ground, presided over by the Chief Imam of Kano, Prof. Muhammad Sani Zahraddin, where the Eid prayer was conducted at about 8:30 a.m.
In his sermon, Prof. Zahraddin urged Muslims to continue to pray for the end of this deadly COVID-19 pandemic.
He also appealed to parents not to allow their children to embark on visitation during the Salalh celebration, pointing out that such attitude is against the COVID-19 protocols.
The Chief Imam also prayed for the peace and progress of Kano and Nigeria.
Hisbah officials were on hand to ensure that worshipers complied with the COVID-19 protocols.
It was also observed that face masks were distributed to worshippers as they washed their hands before moving inside the prayer ground where physical distance was obviously maintained.
Churches such as Living Faith Church, Banner of Life, Our Lady of Fatima Catholic church, St. Charles Catholic church, Treasure Life, Calvary Life Assembly and many other Christian congregations in the state, it was observed that they maintained physical distancing and complied with other COVID-19 protocols.
Speaking to Journalists, the immediate-past chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Kano branch, Bishop Ransom Bello said the decision by Ganduje to allow Muslims and Christians to worship on Fridays and Sundays is a welcome development.
According to him, “about a week ago, the Governor of Kano state, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje called us; and he said he was going to ease the lockdown so that we can be having our services on Sunday, and also Muslims will be going to Mosques on Friday to pray because he has the belief that one of the major solutions to this COVID-19 pandemic is prayer. I do also believe that prayer can work.
“So, that is why we are here in the church today praying and appealing to God to intervene. As you can see for yourself, we have been absolutely complying with the COVID-19 protocols.
“The setting of the congregation complies with physical distancing. Worshippers are wearing their face masks. Out there, we have water, soap and sanitizers for all Worshippers and visitors. We are complying with all these protocols because I personally believe that prevention is better than cure.
“I agree that Fridays and Sundays should be free for Muslims and Christians to worship their God. What we need to do as a people is to help ourselves. Government has been doing a lot. We need to strictly comply with the COVID-19 protocols for our good health and that of the members of our families.
“Here in the church, we teach the congregation, we preach to the congregation, we appeal and advise the congregation to comply with the COVID-19 protocols.”
Bishop Bello who is also the General Overseer of Calvary Life Assembly said though COVID-19 may wreak havoc for a while, the end will soon come.
He added that, “you know that we are approaching the end time. The Bible said that things will be happening; things like pestilence. This is part of the signs of the end time. So, I am not surprise with what is happening.
“At the same time, God has promised that there will be rapture before time. So, these are events that must surely come to pass.
Although, perhaps, somethings are happening earlier than anticipated. However, churches can pray so that God can preserve the world.
“Ican not tell you that this pandemic can disappear just like that. We have been dealing with HIV/AIDS for many years now. HIV is still around and we are coping with it. The pandemic may be with us for quite sometime, and I believe that we shall see the end by the grace of God.”
Security was beefed up around places of worship across the ancient commercial city, as residents enjoy the Eid El Fitr with strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols