Sani-Bello in Saudi, identifies with pilgrims’ plights
From Isa Dangana, Minna
Niger State Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani-Bello has left Minna, the state capital with the last batch of 527 pilgrims from the state to perform the 2019 Hajj exercise.
In an interview shortly before departure from the Minna International Airport, Governor Sani-Bello said he was travelling with the pilgrims to ascertain their challenges and identify possible ways of improving on the exercise.
“Since I became Governor in 2015, I have never travelled with the pilgrims. I want to know how they feel and how they are treated. I have received reports in the past from different Hajj committees, but I decided to this time around see things for myself so that if there are areas that need improvement, we will then address before subsequent trips,” he noted.
The Governor stated that while in the Holy Land, they will pray fervently against the increasing wave of insecurity, ensure peaceful coexistence and economic prosperity of the state in particular and the country in general.
Earlier, the State Amirul Hajj, Engr. Inuwa Musa Kuta had disclosed that the State Pilgrims Welfare Board (NSPWB) has improved the allowances for the Area Pilgrims Welfare Officers (APWOs) to enhance their efficiency.
He charged the APWOs and the intending pilgrims to be good ambassadors of the state by strictly obeying the Saudi laws and concentrating on the Hajj rites and obligations.
In his remark, the Acting Executive Secretary of NSPWB, Alhaji Umar Makun Lapai said a total of 3, 273 intending pilgrims, including officials are performing the Hajj this year from the state.
He revealed that the State Government has made adequate arrangement to provide the pilgrims with three square meals and also established the ‘first of its kind’ National Clinic in one of the pilgrims’ accommodations in Makkah.
While acknowledging lots of improvement in the process of
visa issuance this year, the Acting Executive Secretary attributed the flight delays experienced to the absence of written flight schedules and urged the federal government to look into the issue.