By Griffith Ncube, HourlyHits Reporter
POLICE in Glen View 3 stormed a Christ Embassy Church gathering and arrested the pastor who was in the middle of conducting a service.
Police spokesperson Paul Nyathi confirmed the arrest which took place on Sunday. He said the unnamed pastor was holding a prayer service with fifty unvaccinated congregants, in violation of existing lockdown restrictions.
Nyathi urged members of the public to heed Government’s pronouncements on the re-opening of churches which state that only members who are fully vaccinated may physically attend church services. Even then, the congregants must observe all other regular Covid-19 preventative measures such as wearing face masks and social distancing.
The re-opening of churches comes after weeks of suspension of any church gathering under the Level 4 lockdown to control a third wave of the pandemic, which among other measures bans inter-city travel, public gatherings and curtails business hours.
However, in defiance of lockdown regulations, HourlyHits.com witnessed apostolic sects conducting services in the open in Chitungwiza including near Government offices at Makoni Shopping Center, just 300 metres from Chitungwiza Police Headquarters.
Church members, including children, could be seen gathered at various shrines without exercising social distancing or sanitising their hands and no vaccination cards werw being checked.
However, Roman Catholic Church branches in Dema turned away unvaccinated congregants, while other churches such as Walter Magaya’s PHD Ministries did not even open on Sunday.
A total of 1.9 million people have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine in Zimbabwe, while more than 1 million have received their second jab.
Zimbabwe aims to inoculate 10 million of its approximately 14 million people by year-end to achieve herd immunity. □