Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has described religious leaders who held services despite the ban by Government amid the spread of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria as “contraveners of common sense”.
The Founder of Living Faith Church, also known as Winners Chapel, Bishop David Oyedepo; Founder of Victorious Army International Ministries, Dr. Joseph Agboli, and many others in Lagos, Ogun and Osun States held services last Sunday with the usual large crowd in attendance.
In the case of Victorious Army International Ministries in ACME area of Ogba, Lagos State, the members of the church attacked operatives of the Rapid Response Squad of the Lagos State Police Command, led by Assistant Commissioner of Police Olatunji Disu, who were there to enforce the Government’s order limiting such religious and social gathering to a maximum of 50 persons.
Speaking with the British Broadcasting Corporation, Soyinka said it was now up to Government to rein in those flouting the laws as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Nigeria rose to 46 on Wednesday.
He told the BBC: “They have been treated with kid gloves for too long… I think there is too much political correctness going on.
“What the government should do in such instances is to take note of these contraveners of common sense and ensure that they are punished after this crisis is over or at some point or the other.
“We have to take on churches and mosques, religions of any kind, including traditional religions, that misbehave and let them understand that they are living in very different times than that of their imagination.”
Soyinka himself has been in self-isolation since returning from the United States nine days ago.