From Mohammad Ibrahim, Kaduna
Kaduna has witnessed its first ever airlift of Christian pilgrims from the state to Israel to perform the holy pilgrimage, as the state government sponsored about 567 this year, with the number increasing from 468 in 2013 representing a 19% increase.
Addressing the intending pilgrims at the Kaduna Airport before their departure, Governor Mukhtar Yero, urged them to be good ambassadors of the state and the country in general.
The Governor also urged them to pray for God’s intervention for the end of the current security challenges confronting Nigeria and the successful conduct of the 2015 general election.
The Executive Secretary of the Kaduna state Christian Pilgrims Board, Nuhu Buzun, also joined the Governor in urging the pilgrims to pray for peace and security in the state and country at large, while in Jerusalem.
He also admonished the pilgrims to shun all acts capable of tarnishing their image and that of the nation and also advised them not to abscond while in the holy land.
The Executive Secretary stated further that all arrangements, including transportation, accommodation and the overall welfare of all the intending pilgrims had been concluded.
Some of the intending pilgrims told our correspondents that their main aim of going to the holy land of Jerusalem was for moral transformation and spiritual rebirth, and most importantly to pray for the peace and stability of Nigeria.
The pilgrims, who were accompanied by some officials from the state, were sponsored by both the state and the 23 local government areas of the state.