Lainya commissioner orders closure of businesses for Sunday worship

Lainya commissioner orders closure of businesses for Sunday worship
Shops closed in Lainya shopping centre on Sunday, September 26, 2021. [Photo: Courtesy]

Christians from Lainya County were on Sunday ordered to close their businesses to attend church services and ‘pray for peace’.

This was in connection with a recent order by County Commissioner Emmanuel Khemis Richard where he directed the residents to give time to God and pray for the disturbed county. Mr Khemis issued the order on September 19 at St. Lazarus church in the E.C.S Diocese of Lainya County.

Afterwards, a video of his remarks was circulated in WhatsApp groups to effect the order. According to the official, the Christian traders should at least close their shops and hotels from morning to 1 pm on Sundays to attend prayers. 

However, he told The City Review on a phone interview that his intentions were not to coerce the people to pray but it was just to ensure that Lainya people respect God adding this would bring a positive change in the county.

He lauded other residents who subscribe to other Christian denominations like the Seventh Days Adventist and the Muslims, saying they have shown so far that they can do close their shops whenever they are going to churches or mosques. 

“All I did was to give Lainya people a piece of advice that they should give themselves at least two hours every Sunday to ask God to give them peace. Nobody is complaining from Lainya and they are comfortable and happy,” he emphasised. 

He advised all South Sudanese to turn to God be it in times of problems or happiness in their lives.

“Some people need to be told on what to do and South Sudan is now suffering because there is a lot of sin; everybody is almost a sinner. People have turned away from godly ways of doing things and they are now doing things according to the wishes of this world and when God turns away from us; we start blaming tribes, leaders and foreign countries,” he said.

He said that the challenges that South Sudanese are going through were because the citizens have been collectively engaging in sin.

According to the commissioner, Lainya citizens will continue to close their shops until the “Kingdom comes’’.

“Even if I find a Muslim on Friday and he is not going to for prayers, I will tell him to close his shop and should go for prayers and even the Seventh-Day Adventists they should go for prayers so that God can bless their business.’’