08 October 2020 by Georgina Humphrey
The FCT Pilgrims Welfare Board says all necessary logistics have been put in place for proper screening of intending Pilgrims to the holyland.
Director of the Board, Mr John Dabara-Audu stated this in an interview with Radio Nigeria in Abuja.
Mr Dabara-Audu stressed that the measures were aimed at making sure that only those yearning for spiritual upliftment were allowed for the exercise.
Mr. Dabara-Audu also said the board has zero tolerance for abscondment adding that guarantors must pay seven million naira if the person they sponsor absconds.
He said the Federal Government would no longer tolerate abscondment and Acts of lawlessness by pilgrims in the holy land.
He therefore appealed to stakeholders to support the efforts of the board at checking abscondment during pilgrimages to redeem the image of Nigeria at the international level.
He also affirmed that though Government sponsorship of pilgrims had stopped, their welfare was of utmost importance while in the Holy land.
He explained that a comfortable accommodation and medical personnel would be provided for the pilgrims to have a successful pilgrimage.
On the just concluded meeting between the Nigeria Christian pilgrims Commission, NCPC and the Chairmen of the thirty six States Christian Pilgrims welfare boards and the FCT, Mr Dabara said, the meeting afforded them the opportunity to rub minds in preparation for this year’s pilgrimage.
The Director explained that the board has commenced sensitization of intending pilgrims for the end of the year pilgrimage.
He said so far he had visited some areas councils Chairmen like Amac, Abaji, Kwali and Gwagwalada to inform them of the commencement of this year’s pilgrimage.
He explained that the essence of the sensitization tour to the area councils in the FCT was to educate intending pilgrims and to intimate them that arrangements for this year’s pilgrimage have been concluded.
Mr Dabara-Audu who said if all things been equal, pilgrimage to the holy land is scheduled to commence in December attributed the late commencement to the Covid-19 pandemic that ravaged the world.
The FCT Director of Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board stressed that the Executive Secretary of the NCPC is touch with the Israeli Ambassador to make sure all covid-19 protocols are in place to meet international best practices.
He added that the Israeli Government is working on the Covid-19 vaccine, and would conduct tests and produce results within minutes before allowing intending pilgrims into Israel to contain the spread of the virus.
He said very soon the chairmen conference of state Christian pilgrims welfare boards and the board of the NCPC will be embarking on state of readiness to the holy lands to ascertain the preparedness before the commencement of the pilgrimage.
The FCT Christian pilgrims Director appealed to wealthy individuals, Corporate Organizations and State Governments to assist Christians who lack the means but desire to visit the holy land once in their life time.