Kenya: Muslims Mark Eid UL Fitr Amid Virus Containment Restrictions

Nairobi — Muslims across Nairobi visited shopping malls to buy food items and gifts in year's Eid ul Fitr celebrations amid restrictive COVID-19 regulations barring congregational worship, a key feature of the festival of breaking the fast.

Some however expressed disappointment over the effects the containment measures have had, isolating them from family members who are locked out of restricted areas and the bursting business centre in Nairobi's Eastleigh where a significant Muslim population in the capital resides.

Speaking to Capital FM News, South B resident Abdi Farah said that the outbreak of coronavirus in Kenya had forced them to break away from the norm of marking the fete with family and friends since some of them have been hindered by partial lockdowns imposed in Mombasa and Eastleigh.

"We have celebrated our Ramadhan and Eid at home for the very first time and we also could not meet with some of our relatives who are locked up in Eastleigh," Farah said.

Mariam Wahid who resides in Nairobi West however said she was in support of the government efforts to curb the disease despite disruptions occasioned by COVID-19 containment measures which include a ban on congregational worship.

"Our first priority is keeping safe because after COVID-19 we can all meet and celebrate together rather than risking our lives," Wahid added.

Under the COVID-19 restrictions gatherings are now restricted to a maximum of fifteen people.

Normally during the month of Ramadhan which lasts for almost 30 days, Muslims break fasts in groups often sharing communal meals.

The end of the Eid-ul-Fitr has traditional been marked with open air prayers at Sir Ali Muslim Grounds in Nairobi and Tononoka in Mombasa.

The outbreak of coronavirus also disrupted other religious ceremonies such as the Easter Sunday celebration for Christians, Palm Sunday.

Kenya has registered 1,214 confirmed cases since the confirmation of the first case in the country on March 13.

The number of recovered patients stands at 383. Fifty-one coronavirus-related deaths have been reported.

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