The Sultan of Sokoto and permanent Amirul Hajj of the Nigerian pilgrims to Saudi Arabia, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar has warned intending pilgrims that they must submit themselves for testing by health personals for the dreaded Ebola disease otherwise such person has to forfeit the hajj exercise.
The Sultan stated this on Saturday while flagging off the 2013/2014 hajj exercise at the newly constructed Dutse International Airport.
Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar declared that, going by the prevailing health challenges being faced in the country an absolute measure has been taken to scrutinize and test the health condition of every intending pilgrim to ensure only healthy persons are allowed to go.
“Every Nigerian pilgrim would be tested and anybody found with questionable health status, he would not be allowed to go , we would ask him to stay back”
The Sultan also commended the Saudi Arabian government for appreciating the frantic effort of Nigerian government toward containing the spread of the Ebola disease, and their acceptance for Nigerian pilgrims to participate in 2014 Hajji exercise.
However in his remarks, the 2014 National Amirul Hajj, His Royal majesty Oba of Lagos Alaiyeluwa Oba Rilwan B Aremu Akiolu charged the intending pilgrims to partake in the exercise with honesty and sincerity of purpose.
“ I am advising pilgrims to dedicate their times on the spiritual devotion, to purify their minds and performs accepted Hajj (Hajji Mabrur) and not to waste their times in commercial activities during their stay in the holy land”,
“I am also calling on our pilgrims to use the period to pray Almighty Allah to bring to an end of the security challenge in the country, eradicate the Ebola disease, and bring a lasting peace and prosperity in Nigeria” said Amirul Hajj
Speaking at the flag-off ceremony the Vice president Architect Namadi Sambo, charged the intending pilgrims to be law abiding citizens and good ambassadors of Nigeria during their stay at the Holy land.
He reiterated the commitment of Federal government to take care of pilgrims’ welfare and do everything possible to protect their lives and dignity during their holy trips.