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COVID-19: Parents warned against leaving children in cars during church service

Parents have been warned against leaving their children alone inside their vehicles while attending church services.
Some parents in Ibadan on Monday condemned the act, describing it as dangerous.

The parents in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria described the act as dangerous to the children who have no adults to look after them while in the parents’ cars.
NAN reports that despite the fact that churches had put in place COVID-19 preventive measures, some worshippers are still fond of bringing their wards to church.
They would, however, leave them inside the vehicles while attending service.
Some parents who were in the habit said their children used to beg them to bring them to church.
They said some of the children used to complain that they were tired of staying indoors or joining church online.
Rosemary Oti, a parent, said she had no one at home to take care of her children, hence her reason of leaving them in her vehicle while in church.
Oti said: “For me, it is safe that way instead of leaving them alone at home and be  worried about what the children were up to while I am away.
“Sometimes, I dash out to see how they are doing as I roll down the vehicle’s window to allow for adequate ventilation.”
Another parent, Oke Olumodeji, however, said: “It’s a bit tricky as you have to look at it from two angles.
“First is: such parents might not have where they can keep their children or who they can leave them with, since both parents are actively involved in church assignments.

“My second view is: there should be a compromise among both parents.
“But ideally, it’s not a good thing to leave children alone in the car whether in church or any other place.”
Also, Wunmi Ajiboye said such acts had led to the death of some children who suffocated while inside the car as their parents forgot to roll down the car window to allow for adequate ventilation.
Ajiboye said: “Why will any parents want to do such?
“It is only due to lack of responsibility and negligence that can make someone do that.
“Why that?
“I don’t support that at all.
“Parents should stay at home with their children until the government changes its guidelines on COVID-19 that will allow children to attend church service.
“Better still, they can join the virtual church till the coronavirus pandemic is over.”
An educationist, Prof. Adams Onuka, said parents should not endanger the lives of their wards by keeping them alone inside the car without an adult attending to them.
Onuka said parents who find themselves in such a situation should stay at home and join their children in holding worship service to God.
Onuka said ignorance was part of the reasons that would make some to engage in such acts.
He said: “The Church starts from home, hence ‘where two or three are gathered, I am in the midst of them’ Jesus Christ said.
“During this trying time, caution is needed for the safety of children.
“It also shows that there may be some hidden weaknesses on the part of parents in the upbringing of their children.
“There will be lack of full concentration on the part of the parents attending church service while their children are inside the car much so in the face of insecurity.
“What will the children alone be doing in the car?
“Playing and learning next to nothing about God.
“The home is the domestic church: husband/father, wife/mother and the children plus any other person(s) within the house; where there is no fear of COVID-19 pandemic.”
Also, Pastor Yemisi Ayorinde, a social worker, said the act of leaving children alone in the car by their parents can be very risky.
Ayorinde said: “How will such children know the appropriate safety measures?
“Children love to explore and that can lead to so much harm.
“Children are to be protected and cared for by putting adequate measures in place to ensure their safety at all times.
“Parents should not be hasty in their decisions when it comes to the safety of their wards, especially now that we are in a trying time.”
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