Sudan: Eid Prayers Said in Sudan's Mosques As Worshippers Defy Ban

Khartoum / El Fasher / Zalingei / Nyala / Kassala — Hundreds of people performed Eid El Fitir prayers in mosques and on public squares in Khartoum and in several state capitals yesterday, listeners reported to Radio Dabanga. This was clearly in violation of the coronavirus precautions that prohibited gatherings and group prayers.

Hundreds of thousands of people crowded the markets to do shopping for Eid El Fitir on Saturday as well.

Activists expressed their surprise at the failure of so many people to adhere to repeated calls from the authorities not to gather, as well as the failure of the authorities to enforce the law.

Central Darfur

The Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) in Central Darfur said that Eid prayers were performed in mosques yesterday and that the acting governor and other officials were present. The SPA said the prayers were organised under the guidance of the Central Darfur Islamic Endowments and Religious Affairs Authority.

The Central Darfur SPA call this "a threat to the lives of people", and a clear violation of the guidelines of the country's High Committee for Health Emergencies and the instructions of the Minister of Religious Affairs and Endowments. It accuses the state government of being too lenient, and not serious in implementing the coronavirus precautions, despite the fragile health situation.

North Darfur

The governor of North Darfur, Maj Gen Malik Khojali, called on the people to strictly implement social distancing in order to avoid infection with the coronavirus.

He said that social distancing has not only become "a national duty and a moral responsibility", but also is a religious duty under Islamic law.

The governor called on the people in North Darfur to continue to implement the precautionary coronavirus measures and not to gather or visit relatives, as is usual at Eid El Fitir.

Kassala

Doctor Eman Mahmoud, Director General of the Kassala Ministry of Health, holds the High Committee for Health Emergencies and the Kassala Security Committee responsible for the opening of the grand market, allowing gatherings, not banning transportation and not being committed to the coronavirus precautions.

Darfur Centre for Disease Control

Member of the Sovereign Council Mohamed El Taayshi inaugurated the Darfur Centre for Disease Control in Nyala, capital of South Darfur, yesterday. The centre will test Covid-19 infections.

El Taayshi said that the opening of the centre in the current circumstances was a great achievement.

The centre will examine samples from people suspected of being infected with the Covid-19 virus from all five Darfur states. It will train 40 laboratory assistants to perform all types of laboratory tests.

The Federal Ministry of Health announced on Sunday that 256 new cases of coronavirus were recorded, and that 9 more people died. This brings the total number of cases in Sudan to 3,628, including 146 who died.

Radio Dabanga's editorial independence means that we can continue to provide factual updates about political developments to Sudanese and international actors, educate people about how to avoid outbreaks of infectious diseases, and provide a window to the world for those in all corners of Sudan. Support Radio Dabanga for as little as €2.50, the equivalent of a cup of coffee.

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