Pilgrims from Lagos State have lauded the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) and State Pilgrims Welfare Board for providing adequate meal and accommodation for them.
In separate interviews in Madinah yesterday, the pilgrims however urged government to continue to discharge its responsibilities to ensure a hitch-free pilgrimage.
Mr Lukman Olasode from Ikeja Local Government Area of Lagos used the opportunity to advise fellow pilgrims to avoid unnecessary movement under the scorching sun.
Olasode said, “I really enjoy this pilgrimage to Holy Land because I believe Allah will accept prayers if you place all your affairs with Him. I thank Allah for this opportunity. There is nothing I can do except to thank Allah.
“This sun is too much because we have never experienced this. This is my first visit. But if you are careful, you won’t face any challenge.
“I enjoy the meal. It is served as at when due. We take breakfast and dinner. Though there is no lunch, I still thank Allah. The accommodation is also superb.”
Another Lagos pilgrim, Showami Tajuddeen, from Abeokuta, also urged the pilgrims to be good ambassadors of Nigeria.
Showami implored them to respect the rules and regulations of Saudi Arabia.
Asked to comment on the preparation made for the pilgrims, he said, “The arrangements are okay. I’m satisfied with them. The breakfast and dinner are adequate. We still enjoy fruits being provided.”
On the advice for the Hajj officials, he said, “My advice for pilgrims is for them to respect the rules of the authorities in Saudi Arabia. They should respect Nigeria as well by being good ambassadors. Nigeria should not be disgraced.
“The government should also continue to discharge its responsibilities to Nigerian pilgrims.”
According to NAHCON’S Command and Control Center, 7,844 Nigerian pilgrims from Katsina, Kano, Kaduna, Nasarawa, Kebbi, Kwara, Kogi, and Lagos States had been transported to Saudi Arabia since the airlift began on July 10.
95,000 Nigerian pilgrims were given opportunity to perform this year’s Hajj exercise.
From the figure, government quota stands at 65,000, while private tour operators will provide the remaining 30,000 pilgrims.