Dar es Salaam (Agenzia Fides) - The President of Tanzania John Pombe Magufuli has called for a three-day national prayer to ask for "the intercession of the Most High against the new coronavirus". "Tanzanian compatriots, because of the pandemic, I urge you to use these three days, from April 17 to April 19, to pray God for His protection and healing", tweeted the Head of State, who is a Catholic.
The toll of the coronavirus in the Country has risen to 94 infected people. Health Minister Ummy Mwalimu informed that the cases were reported in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam, in the city of Mwanza on the shores of Lake Victoria and in northern Kilimanjaro. Four patients have died from the virus since its first case was reported on March 16.
Tanzania has not imposed any restrictions on movements or closed its borders, but has suspended social gatherings and ordered the closure of educational institutions. But the places of worship remain open. Catholic churches in Tanzania have remained open like other places of worship. Church sources said thousands of people attended public masses after a presidential directive allowed churches and mosques to remain open, so that people could seek spiritual comfort and material aid.
The Catholic Church has taken the appropriate steps to ensure the hygiene and safety of the faithful such as social distancing and eliminating the practices that put people in contact with each other. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 17/4/2020)