AFRICA/CHAD - COVID-19, the Bishops: "Food security must be guaranteed"

Friday, 15 May 2020 bishops   coronavirus   local churches   economy  

N'Djamena (Agenzia Fides) - "We appreciate the prompt reaction of the State to deal with the pandemic through the Alert and Health Security Cell", write the Bishops of Chad in their message sent to Agenzia Fides, on the consequences of COVID-19 on the local Church.
Even in Chad places of worship have been closed to prevent the spread of contagion, but this - the Bishops say - "does not mean the suspension of prayer and any form of worship, but only the suspension of public religious ceremonies".
If the Bishops praise the public health measures adopted to contain the pandemic, they warn, however, that the consequences of the economic crisis deriving from them risk having a devastating impact on the population, especially the poorest sectors of the population. "Essential goods and in particular food come from rural areas", they underline. "The rainy season has already arrived and now is the time for sowing. Concrete steps must be taken to allow farmers to plant crops in their fields safely. The agricultural season can be compromised by the continuous conflicts between herdsmen and farmers", say the Bishops who ask the authorities to work so as "to ensure the country's food security in the post COVID-19 pandemic".
The Bishops make Church resources available, starting from the structures of Caritas, in a spirit of collaboration with the State to assist people affected by the disease and its consequences, regardless of their religious affiliation.
In thanking all those who are struggling to face the disease, the Bishops conclude by hoping that "the pandemic is not only an evil, but becomes an invitation to conversion for greater national solidarity". (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 15/5/2020)