- December 31 2020. 8:16 am
Masquerade displays during the New Year celebration have been banned in Cross River even as churches are ordered to restrict cross over night activities to 10 pm. A statement by Operation Akparakwu headed by Dr Walter Mboto, Permanent Secretary, State Security Advisers Office warned organisers of masquerades that if they dared to display on the 1st of January or within the period as planned.
“This is a warning to organizers of Nyoro Ekpe 2021 in Efe Ekpe Iboku Utan, opposite Duke Town Presbyterian Church that they will be arrested and prosecuted should they go ahead with the planned public masquerade display during this period”. The statement further stated that government has also banned public displays of Tin Koriko, Nnabor and any other gathering that fails the Covid-19 protocol. The government in the same vein warned churches not to exceed 10pm which is the stipulated time for movement in the state as the curfew imposed since the #EndSARS period is still in place.
Rev Father Bob Etta, the Special Adviser to governor Ayade on Religious Matters in a letter to the leadership of Christian Association of Nigeria and other blocks said: “Conscious of the recent rise in the number of cases of COVID-19 in the country, and the need to maintain the improved security situation in the state, His Excellency Sir Ben Ayade the Governor of Cross River State has directed that churches should fix their Cross Over services within the 6.00 am to 10.00 pm time permitted for movement”. He warned churches to enforce the laid down protocols for COVID-19 to avoid running foul of the law. “Wearing of Face Mask in public worship, washing of hands, use of hand sanitizer is compulsory because we have a responsibility to keep our state safe, and protect our families”. He said COVID-19 Protocol Enforcement Teams will go round churches to ensure compliance by churches during the cross over night.
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