20210513 eid prayers uae
Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

As UAE citizens and residents prepare to mark Eid Al Adha this week, it is critical for everyone to remember and abide by all the Covid-related health and safety protocols that have been put in place for the occasion.

The palpable excitement of observing Eid — although yet another one amid the pandemic — must be tempered with the precaution of going about the festivities in a responsible manner.

With almost the entire percentage of eligible people in the most vulnerable categories fully vaccinated in the UAE, that is not a difficult task — but certainly requires the full cooperation of everyone.

We need to follow all protocols when it comes to hosting or attending family gatherings, wear masks whenever outside, maintain proper social distancing, and wash or sanitise our hands regularly. We must also immediately self-quarantine if we come into contact with a positive case.

Avoid physical gatherings

Health authorities have advised residents to avoid physical gatherings and opt for virtual meetings with friends and family during the holidays, to protect public health and community safety during Eid Al Adha. Moreover, senior citizens, the sick and those with chronic health conditions should limit outings where possible.

In addition, there are standard precautions that we must be vigilant about this Eid. For instance, animal sacrifices are only to be conducted at approved abattoirs, and distributions and payments are to be arranged with government-recognised charitable organisations within the UAE.

All these proactive measures are a reminder that the Covid-19 pandemic is not yet over, and that’s why we must find safe ways of going about our festive celebrations and daily activities.

The UAE with its effective public health and prevention strategies and diligent enforcement of Covid guidelines and vaccinations, has done a stellar job to tame the virus and reopen the economy. But the virus continues to hit several other countries in the region and beyond.

We cannot, therefore, afford to let our guards down and must remain ever vigilant. In Abu Dhabi, for instance, a national disinfection programme will be effective from 12 midnight to 5am, starting Monday — during which time residents will be allowed to step out of their houses only to buy essential food items and medicines.

It is only by fully participating in all preventive measures and following them that we can ensure the battle against the coronavirus is fully effective. Amid the pandemic raging the world over, let us fulfil our responsibilities in preventing the spread of the coronavirus.

Let Eid Al Adha this year become an occasion for hope, peace and the blissful blessings of Allah.