Though the attacks on Christian worshippers and institutions in the North of Nigeria by Islamist extremists, boko haram, have not been replicated in the South, Churches in the South have not taken any chances as they have deviced security measures against such attacks.
In one of such measures, St Theresa’s Catholic Cathedral, Nsukka in Enugu State, has barred women wearing massive headgears popularly called “canopy” from church services.
In the same token women were also barred from going into church services with hand bags.
Explaining the reason for the measures, the Cathedral Administrator, Rev. Fr. Uche Obodoechina who said the order comes into effect September 9,2012, noted that the big head gears disfigured the wearers making their identification difficult.
That apart, he observed that when won by many women at mass, the big headgears constituted what he termed “barricade”, whereby worshippers views are blocked during mass.
Announcing that the security personnel of the church have been instructed to confiscate such big headgears after the deadline, the administrator, appealed to members of the congregation to co-operate, understand and bear with the inconveniences meant for the security of members at church services.
“This measure is aimed at enhancing the security of the faithful during Sunday mass, he explained.
Other measures include the parking of all cars at the St. Theresa’s College filed some distance away from the Cathedral complex with only motorcycles authorized to park at the designated places within the Cathedral premises.
Stressing the need for punctuality to church services, Rev Fr. Obodoechina warned that late comers would not be allowed to enter the Cathedral compound as he regretted the inconveniences “the measures will cause members” adding that they were necessary to ensure the security of members during mass.