Tuesday July 7, 2020 – The move by President Uhuru Kenyatta to bar old people from places of worship has not gone down well some clergy most of who are above the age limit recommended due to Covid 19.

During his address yesterday, Uhuru also barred children below the age of 13 years from attending churches and mosques.

“In-person worship should not include congregants under the age of 13 or those above 58 years or persons with underlying conditions,” the directive reads in part. 

Speaking yesterday, a number of them offered alternatives to the directive.

Renowned Sheikh Ibrahim Lethome, the Secretary-General, Centre for Sustainable Conflict Resolution and Legal Advisor to the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims, welcomed the guidelines but asked the President to lower the age of children and allow Imams and clergy to lead the sermons.

“We are happy places of worship will be reopened.”

“Since Covid-19 is a reality, we must have some guidelines in the mosques and churches.”

“However, Imams and pastors should be exempted from the 58 years rule unless one has an underlying condition.”

“Let’s also lower the age of children to seven years unaccompanied.”

“The guiding principle should be if the child can observe the safety measures in the mosque,” Sheikh Lethome proposed.

Dr. Anthony Musembi, clergy and musician based in Nakuru, reiterated the Sheikh’s sentiments wondering who would lead the sermons. 

“In as much as we invite the president’s directive, some of the rules are totally interfering with our Freedom of Worship.”

“The best practice could be to let the elderly attend places of worship but be keener and maintain social distancing.”

“Remember, these elderly people still go to other social places like the market and still practice safety.”

“Why is it different in places of worship?” stated Musembi.

Musembi added that he had directed his church members to continue following services virtually for those barred from attending church services as an alternative to the directive.


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