Places of worship, religious wedding ceremonies as well as meetings and conferences in hotels are some of the services that are expected to resume as Rwanda continues to slowly reopen the economy, cautiously relaxing measures to contain New Coronavirus.
An extraordinary cabinet meeting chaired by President Paul Kagame on Tuesday reviewed the measures which have been in place since March this year, aimed at containing the spread of COVID-19 but cautioned that all reopening services must continue to adhere to health guidelines to prevent the spread of the virus.
“Religious wedding ceremonies will resume but should not exceed 30 persons. The Ministry of Local Government will share detailed guidelines,” a cabinet statement said, adding that religious marriage ceremonies will also resume but will not exceed 30 persons as well.
Similarly, religious funeral activities will also reopen but also not be exceeding 30 persons as it has been with non-religious funeral activities which had already been permitted.
The cabinet further resolved that “places of worship will remain closed but in the meantime investment in COVID-19 precautionary and preventive measures is encouraged to allow readiness for reopening in 15 days upon an epidemiological assessment”.
Last week, the Rwanda Inter-Religious Council issued a statement indicating the precautionary measures places of worship are looking to implement in line with the prevention of COVID-19 as they prepared to reopen.
Despite reopening tourism services with conditions, the country’s borders will remain closed except for cargo and goods as well as returning citizens who will continue to be subjected to mandatory quarantine in accordance with existing health guidelines.
The western province districts of Rusizi and Rubavu will also remain closed to public transport as it has been while schools remain closed till September.
Bars and gaming activities too will remain closed as well as mass gatherings in public spaces and homes.
In what is likely to be a huge relief for the hard-hit tourism and hospitality sector, tourism will reopen with precautionary measures while hotels and conference halls will be able to host meetings and conferences as long as they observe social distancing and hygiene measures.
The country continues to register slightly increased numbers of COVID-19 cases, mainly attributed to the Rusizi and Rusumo clusters as well as returning Rwandans which authorities are trying to contain as the government looks to resuscitate the economy.