Lagos bids farewell to Hajj pilgrims, warn against money laundering, illicit drugs

The Lagos State Government has warned the state pilgrims to this year’s Hajj exercise in Saudi Arabia to avoid engaging in money laundering, possession of illicit drugs and other social vices.

Lagos state Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu gave this warning in a message to the one day seminar to bid farewel to the pilgrims held at the Blue Roof, Alausa in Ikeja.

Represented by the State Commissioner for Justice, Mr Lawal Pedro, the governor implored them to be good Ambassador while in the Holy land.

He said that the state had secured a befitting accommodation and necessary facilities for their comfort in Mecca.

According to the Governor, the same arrangement is available at Arafat saying they will be attended to by dedicated Medical team on their health challenges in the Holy land

He concluded that Lagos has a high reputation and expect the pilgrims to sustain it and be exemplary to other states.

On behalf of the Speaker Lagos State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Mudashiru Obasa, the Chairman House Committee on Home Affairs, Hon Jubril Abdulkareem congratulates the pilgrims and urged them to follow the guidelines laid down by the pilgrims Welfare Board.

He also charged them to abide with the extanct rules both locally and while in Saudi Arabia.

The Amir Hajj who is also the State Commissioner for Home Affairs, Hon brahim Layode thanked Governor Sanwo-Olu for the support towards the success of the Hajj exercise.

He assured that the welfare of the pilgrims will be well taken care of in the Holy land.

On his part, the Chairman of the state pilgrims Welfare Board, Eng Shakiru Ayinde Gafar said the gathering was to consolidate on the series of lectures for the pilgrims during past seminars.

He described Hajj as a divine call by Allah adding that those who have the opportunity this year should take full advvantage of the exercise to reap full rewards from Allah.

The Board Chairman also urged the intending pilgrims to adhere strictly to the rules and regulations guiding the conduct of the pilgrims in Saudi Arabia.

Shakiru Gafar said that the Board intend to ensure zero record of casualty this year among pilgrims from the state.

In the lecture titled ” Significance of Hajj in the Lifetime of Man”, the Chief Imam of Igbogbo Central Mosque, Sheikh Abdulrahman Lukman said Hajj is a major act of worship solely for Allah to attain high level of spirituality.

He said that the pilgrims must purify their souls before performing the religious exercise.

The lecturer however said that it was sad that today Hajj had been turned into social exercise.

According to him, Board members, the Ulamah and the Private Hajj operators should work as a team for a successful Hajj exercise.

Speaking on those acts that could invalidate the Hajj exercise, Sheikh Abdulrahman Lukman said they must do away from adultery, back biting, fighting, vulgar language and impatience.

Representative of Flynas Airline thanked the state Government for the privilege to serve as the official carrier for the pilgrims.

He disclosed that they plan to deploy four aircafts with capacity to airlift 430 pilgrims at once.

According to him, each pilgrims are allowed to carry 32kg for cargo and 8kg for check in on their return to the country.

On behalf of the police, Chief Suprintendent of Police Jamiu Raji warned the pilgrims against engaging in any act of criminality while in the Holy land.

He also urged them to be cautious of their belongings and never assist anyone to carry their luggage.

Jamiu Raji also informed them that the authorities in Saudi Arabia had set up a Complaints centre for the pilgrims to lodge complaints and observations.

The National Orientation Agency, reprrsented by Alhaja Aisha Tiamiyu said their responsibility is to educate the pilgrims and Nigerians at large on their duties to the nation.

She implored them not to turn themselves into beggars in Mecca and Medinah.

Hajia Aisha Tiamiyu also urged them to abide by the laws of their host country, Saudi Arabia.

Hajj is the last of five pillars of Islam, a spiritual journey embarked upon once in a life time.

1,800 pilgrims are expected to perform the 2024 Hajj exercise from Lagos this year out of over 65,000 from Nigeria.

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