Abia seals church for contravening guidelines
The Abia State Inter-ministerial Committee on COVID-19 on Wednesday sealed a popular church, Chapel of Answers International, located at No. 86 Jubilee road by Kent in Aba, the commercial nerve of the state indefinitely.
When the inter-ministerial committee arrived at the church, its members, who were holding a meeting, were not putting on their nose masks and did not maintain social distancing.
The Inter-ministerial team led by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Chris Ezem, also sealed an electrical plaza opposite the Ariaria International Market.
Ezem said the church and plaza were sealed for violating the COVID-19 protocol and guidelines.
The SSG, who was not pleased with what he met on the ground at the market when the team visited, threatened to shut down the market if the traders and its leaders fail to comply with the government’s directives on COVID-19 protocols.
According to him, the scenario at the market showed the ineffectiveness of its leadership and members of the COVID-19 task force in ensuring that the guidelines on the reopening of the market were strictly adhered to by traders and shop owners.
He also frowned at the unhygienic nature of the market, where some traders displayed consumable goods on the road, making vehicular movement in the market difficult.
“The lives of Abians are important to the state government and I am ordering that the pastor be prosecuted for violating government directives.
“We are urging people to wear their face masks, maintain social distance and sanitise their hands. We don’t want the continued spread of this disease in Abia. Our visit today is to go round to make sure that the orders of the state government are adhered to.
“On Ariaria, if we find out any breach of government directives on the condition for trading in this place, we may be forced to order a complete lockdown of the market.
Commissioner for Trade and Investment Cosmos Ndukwe, his Information counterpart, Chief John Okiyi-Kalu, among other officials of government and the COVID-19 team, were part of the government’s entourage.