On Curtailing the Spread of SARS-CoV-2 Pandemic Among Religious Followers in Nigeria: An Empirical Study

Timothy A. Ogunleye, Taoheedat Alanamu, Dorcas T. Ailobhio, Nasimot O. Afolabi

Abstract


Controlling religious gathering during the time of rapid spread of COVID-19 pandemic becomes a serious problem faced by governments at all levels. In fact, all other areas of human endeavor where large gatherings could take place in Nigeria such as club houses, beer parlors, ceremonial gatherings, schools and institutions, market places including kiosks and shops, airports and motor parks, commercial and other money-deposit banks, private and public offices, etcetera were kept under perfect control by government except the religious centers. The global trend of COVID-19 pandemic has become more worrisome as the incidence keeps increasing every day. Curtailing its spread among the human race should be a responsibility to be performed by every individual not only in Nigeria but also in the whole world. However, the influence of religious organizations can never be overlooked in dealing with societal attitude towards curtailing the outbreak of the pandemic. Therefore, the data used for this study were sourced via an online survey designed from Google account with a link. Having expunged incomplete information from the responses received, two thousand, three hundred and sixty useful ones were analyzed using R software. Descriptive statistics such as frequency, percentages and graphics were employed alongside chi-squared test as statistical tools. Empirically, results reveal that it’s the responsibility of everyone to encourage curtailing the spread of COVID-19 pandemic. Also, it’s established that religious followers do not fear the pandemic; they only obeyed government’s lock-down directive. Though majority of the citizens (84%) consider this policy as punishment, people prefer worshipping their God (gods) at home, if possible from home while engaging with their daily commercial activities. Hence, the study also reveals that most of the religious teachings during the pandemic were meant to publicly sensitize citizens about how dangerous COVID-19 is. This was supported by approximately 73% of the respondents. We therefore recommend that representatives of religious leaders and organizations should be involved during policy formulation, especially health-related policies as evidenced from the study.


Keywords


COVID-19 pandemic; Government; Religion; Religious followers

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/12068

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