Some members of the congregation worshipping at Agege Central Mosque (Hausa Community) on Tuesday evening attacked a team of Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency(LASEPA), Lagos State Safety Commission, journalists and police officers, The Nation reports.
The team had earlier visited and sealed off a warehouse of Jumia, an online marketing store for contravening the lockdown order by the Federal government, was on monitoring and enforcement to the mosque when the incident happened.
The agencies had also sealed off SPN Packaging Studio Press Nigeria Plc on Plot B, Israel Adebajo Close, Ikeja and Supreme Hotel on 8, Omitola Panada, Agege.
On their way back to Alausa, the team stopped to check if the worshippers were adhering to the directive of the Lagos State Government on the number of people that should be in a gathering.
The congregation was observing Solatul Ishai (the last part of the five daily prayers), when the team arrived.
The LASEPA team leader and two journalists went into the mosque but were surprised when they got to the prayer section. The big mosque, popularly known as Moshalashi Alhaja, was filled to capacity.
After completion of the prayer, the LASEPA team leader requested to have an audience with the Chief Imam of the Mosque, but he was told by a leader in the mosque that the Chief Imam was not around.
When he requested for the next person in rank, some members of the congregation started shouting at him.
As some of the mosque’s leaders were trying to calm them down, they became more aggressive and manhandled some members of the team.
The monitoring team retreated when some of the worshippers resorted to carrying objects to be used as weapon. Members of the team entered their vehicles while the worshippers started shouting Allahu Akbar! Allahu Akbar!!
They chased the team and threw objects at their vehicles.
Speaking on the incident, LASEPA General Manager, Dr Dolapo Fasawe condemned the act, describing it as barbaric.
She stressed that the state will not hesitate to sanction violators of the government’s orders, to serve as a deterrent to others.
She said:“It was obvious that the gathering did not comply with the directive of the state government. The mosque was filled to capacity.
“The essence of social distancing is to contain the spread of coronavirus. The people are endangering their lives and those of their neighbours. The government has a duty to protecting lives of the people.”
The General Manager promised to ensure that appropriate authorities take up the matter, adding that such gathering must not be allowed to continue.