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Lift ban on churches; we’ll ensure social distancing – GPCC appeals to government

The Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council (GPCC) has said its members are ready to implement stringent safety protocols at the various churches to prevent the spread of COVID-19, in an appeal to the President to lift the ban on religious gatherings.

Government has placed a ban on all public gatherings including conferences, workshops, funerals, festivals, political rallies, church and Islamic activities, and other related events in a bid to curb the spread of the novel Coronavirus in the country.

The ban, which is in its eighth week, was initially set for one month by President Akufo-Addo but was subsequently extended.

The GPCC explained that churches have proper structures and the capacity to roll out effective social-distancing and safety measures unlike the market places and other business centres which have challenges in adhering to safety etiquettes.

Bishop Samuel Noi Mensah, an Executive Member of GPCC, in a Citi News interview, said churches can reduce their seating numbers to observe social distancing and the other protocols enumerated.

“The seating capacity should not be more than 60 percent instead of having a full house. It can be 50 percent and can be done in various segments in terms of the first service and second service. We can make sure that the necessary health protocols; social distancing, hand washing, sanitisers and coming with a nose mask [are observed]. These are things the churches can do,” he suggested.

Ban on public gatherings by two weeks

President Nana Akufo-Addo extended the ban on public gatherings by two more weeks at the end of April.

The extension came into full force on Monday, April 27, 2020, at 1:00 am.

President Akufo-Addo said the decision followed a strong consensus from some stakeholders in the country.

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