Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Muslims have been asked to embrace vaccination and observe Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) as many turned up for the first Juma prayer in four months.
Mosques like other worship places were closed in June following a surge in covid-19 cases.
On Wednesday, President Yoweri Museveni opened places of worship but limited the congregants to only 200.
Today Muslims turned up at Gadhafi National Mosque at Old Kampala and Masjid Musa at Hotel Africana for Juma prayers. The majority carried their prayer mats and wore masks.
At the entrances, they were required to wash their hands before accessing the premises of the mosques.
The Muft of Uganda Shaban Ramadhan Mubaje led the prayers at Gadhafi National Mosque and thanked the President for opening worship places.
He warned Muslims against disregarding the SOPs saying that health experts often advised against re-opening of worship centers after finding that people in some worship places were flouting the SOPs. Mubaje rallied Muslims to get vaccinated.
The Secretary for Education at Uganda Muslim Supreme Council Sheikh Juma Bakhit Cucu delivered the summon at Gadhafi National Mosque urging Muslims to submit to Allah and abide by the Islamic teachings.
He preached about good behavior, respect for life and honesty.
Prince Kassim Nakibinge who performed his prayers at Masjid Mbogo in Kawempe also urged Muslims to observe SOPs. The City Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago who joined Nakibinge at Mbogo used the opportunity to ask the government to open schools. He says many children have been redundant at home for a long and have resorted to unwanted behaviour including drug abuse.
At Old Kampala, Masjid Musa and Masjid Jamia in Kololo among other mosques were marked to ensure the social distancing. At Masjid Musa, the washing areas were closed to avoid worshipers using them.