Top Cleric Calls On Congregants To Take Up Covid-19 Vaccination

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By Robert Tapfumaneyi

TOP cleric Reverend Kenneth Mtata has called on fellow church leaders and their congregants to embrace vaccination which he emphasised was the best method so far to fight the continued spread of Covid-19.

The Zimbabwe Council of Churches secretary general was speaking in Harare Friday shortly after taking his own jab of the Sinopharm vaccine.

“In the last few weeks, we have been consulting with the church leaders, with the medical professionals for us to have a deeper understanding of the vaccines and all the challenges and risks associated with it,” Mtata said.

“We have concluded that this vaccine could be useful to protect people from the Covid-19 virus and therefore, we are encouraging people to get vaccinated.

“I have been vaccinated myself and I am calling upon all our clergy and church leaders to get vaccinated.

“Arrangements are being made where they can be vaccinated in convenient places at times.

“We do not do it only for ourselves but also for our congregates. It is important that we protect ourselves.”

Mtata added, “We don’t only get protected using this vaccine but also by continuing to use masks, washing our hands and keeping social distancing.

“We pray that God continues to provide protection for us as well as we hear that there is a third wave coming up, we pray that God will watch over us so that we are safe to continue in service of Him and of our neighbour.”

His message also follows reports that some church leaders were advising their followers to shun the programme in place of prayer and divine protection.

There have been claims some of the leaders discouraging vaccination were self-styled prophets who saw the opportunity to sell some anointing oil to congregants.

United Family International Church founder and popular preacher Emmanuel Makandiwa is among prominent church leaders who have discouraged vaccination.