The Church clergy in Makueni County wants the government to list the church as one of the essential service providers to stop the arrest of pastors during curfew in Kenya to help in the fight against coronavirus.
The Makueni clergy has accused the government of sidelining the church in major decisions placing it in the middle of hefty criticism among Kenyans.
“We feel that the best way to fight the unseen enemy is through involving the church where there are God’s spiritual powers and subsequently through the medical professionals,” the Makueni clergy spokesperson Rev. Nicholas Kyule said.
The clergy has also questioned why motorbike boda boda operators, hotels, shops, matatus, weddings among other service providers and goods are available under certain limitations yet the churches are to remain shut.
The Makueni clergy from various denominations in the County has criticized the government for only investing in science and turning a blind eye on faith and God.
The clergy has argued that it is unfair to close churches that offer essential services and insisted that they too can self-regulate and ensure social distancing as well as high levels of hygiene.
“Matatus are operating but with limited passengers, burials, taxis among others yet the church has been closed, why?” Rev. Kyule has asked.
“The church is the best place for hope and resilience. Indeed, a safe haven to the downtrodden and stricken by any calamity,” Rev. Kyule added.
“We are ready to even have church services outside the churches at open fields. Increasing the number of church services and having fewer members per session especially on those who play key roles in the church,” Rev. Kyule added.
“The objective of the curfew is to fight the spread of COVID-19 and not civil unrest. We are of the opinion that the church should have been listed as top essential service providers,” Rev. Kyule argued.
Pastor Collins David warned that it was wrong to let people suffer at home in the night in fear of the curfew.
According to Rev. Kyule it is only pastors who have cars that can be used to take the ill to hospital and hence should not be punished during curfew hours.
“Pastors need letters of exemption during the curfew hours so that no pastor is arrested while attending prayers,” Rev. Kyule concluded.