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Police arrests four for holding prayers in Kanungu

Kanungu, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Police has arrested four Christians for holding prayers in Kanungu district.

In March, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s gave several directives including not holding prayers in church premises as a away of stopping the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

The suspects who are detained at Kanungu police station were on Sunday found gathered at Nyamiyaga Church of Uganda in Karueizi parish, Kihihi su couty, Kinkiizi diocese holding prayers.

Assistant Inspector of police Joel Bituka, the officer in charge of Butogota police station says that they received information that Christians are secretly gathering in the church which contravenes with the presidential directives against public gatherings.

Bituka says when they reached the church they were shocked to find over 25 Christians. He said the Christians run off after seeing security officers. But police managed to arrest four people

Police has identified the fours Christians arrested as; Rev Canon Patrick Habasa, the archdeacon of Nyamiyaga archdeaconry but declined to reveal identities of other arrested suspects in order not to jeopardize with investigations.

Elly Maate, police spokesperson for Kigezi region confirms the arrest saying that they are likely to be charged with negligence likely to spread infectious diseases after investigations into the matter are complete. Maate wonders why people have continued to defy physical distancing and public gathering orders despite several appeals and sensitization messages.

This is not the first time Christians and their followers are arrested in Kigezi for defying presidential directives on public gatherings.

In March this year, Pastor Festo Kasooka attached to Revival Tabernacle Church in Kabale district was arrested together with 8 followers holding prayers, in the same month, Rev.Fr. John Bazimenyera the Dean of Mutolere Deanery, Kisoro district was arrested for holding prayers.

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