۲۹ مهر ۱۳۹۹ | Oct 20, 2020
News Code: 360265
17 April 2020 - 04:00
Ethiopia: Muslims, Christians join to fight COVID-19

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed-led government also obliged them, by relaxing broadcast rules and directed four government-run TV stations to reserve prime time slots for the leaders of these two faiths to deliver lectures and lead prayers. Ethiopian law did not allow religious programs on national television.

Hawzah News Agency - (Addis Ababa - Ethiopia) - While in other parts of the world, authorities labored to convince some religious groups about the dangers of the pandemic, in Ethiopia two major religions Christianity and Islam took no time to join the fight against the coronavirus or COVID-19.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed-led government also obliged them, by relaxing broadcast rules and directed four government-run TV stations to reserve prime time slots for the leaders of these two faiths to deliver lectures and lead prayers. Ethiopian law did not allow religious programs on national television.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Danial Kibret, an advisor of the prime minister said the move was aimed to let believers pray from their homes and avoid any religious gathering.

The Inter-Religious Council of Ethiopia (IRCE), established in 2010 to promote tolerance and address common concerns was roped in to help believers to continue prayers from their homes and engage them in the fight against the pandemic.

Bekele Muleta, the chief executive officer of Fana Broadcasting Corporation, said his organization has reserved a one-hour evening prime time for both the religious groups.

‘’The program involves religious teachings, prayers, and lessons about necessary precautions to combat COVID-19. Our feedback tells that the viewers of both religions were satisfied, “he said.

Director-General of Ethiopian Broadcast Authority Getachew Dinku said the shows are reaching to 60%-70% population, who have TV sets. Dinku, who is also a member of the National Coronavirus Campaign Committee said they have suggested a code of conduct to prevent unnecessary competition and negative messages.

According to census data, Christians account for 62.8% while Muslims comprise 43.5 percent of the country’s 109 million population. Dominant Christian groups include Ethiopian Orthodoxy, Pentay and Roman Catholic.

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