Political, Religious leaders petition court over continued closure of Churches

Religious leaders and a section of politicians from the National Unity Platform (NUP) have petitioned court over continued closure of places of worship.

In June 2021, president Yoweri Museveni imposed the second lockdown, directing the closure of all schools and other teaching institutions, public transport places of worship, bars and others. When he lifted the lockdown on various sectors and businesses, the president ordered that places of worship should remain closed for another 60 days.

In a joint presser at Hotel Triangle in Kampala, they expressed their dismay on how the government treats the matter of worshiping places.

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According to Dr Lina Zedrina from NUP, as practitioners of the various religious groups, the values of religion lie in one’s self and practicing it. She shared that people have since slid back in terms of spiritual growth. She further said it would have been a different case if the places of worship were open.

“The times churches were open we would go and confess. Places like the taxi park and kikuubo are open, why not the churches. Spiritual damage is a lot and we can feel it. We are seriously thirsty, please open the churches so we can enjoy our constitutional right to worship,” Dr. Zedrina said.

Sheikh Asuman Lule Ssemakula of Masjid Central Kitintale shared that growing up, all people were always told to fear God. This is because through this, one would get wisdom. He shares that before reopening buses lodges, the government would have fronted places of worship.

Evelyn Naikoba, a lawyer, said they have taken the matter to constitutional court to challenge the phenomenon of the continued closure.

“We are challenging the discriminatory treatment given to places of worship that is why we are in constitutional court. What we see is a crackdown on religious institutions and Covid-19 just presented an opportune time to do this,’’ she said.