BY DONATUS NADI, Lafia
Following the prevailing financial crunch due to dwindling revenue that has engulfed the state in the recent times, Nasarawa State government has put on hold its tradition of sponsoring pilgrims to the holy land of Saudi Arabia.
Executive Secretary of the Nasarawa State Muslim Pilgrim Welfare Board, Alhaji Abubakar Hassan Nalaraba, disclosed this on Friday in Lafia, the state capital, during a press conference adding Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura’s decision to that regard was to allow him weigh the prevailing economic situation of the state.
He disclosed further that the welfare board has succeeded in retaining the accommodations allotted to pilgrims from the state in the holy land last year as tents and other accommodations meant for Nasarawa pilgrims in the Saudi Arabia are all in good shape.
According to him, “the board has approved this year’s Hajj fare at N790,500 per pilgrim which include forms, suit cases, medical screening, uniforms, hijab and Arafat day feeding expenses in order to compliment the National Hajj Commission’s efforts.”
He said that the variation in this year’s Hajj fare rate to that of the previous year which was N715,000 was occasioned by the high exchange rate of the naira being experienced.
Alhaji Nalaraba concluded by disclosing that as of August 8, this year, a total of 1,682 intending pilgrims have indicated interest for the journey to the holy land which showed a sharp drop in the participants in this year as compared to 1,785 pilgrims that performed the exercise last
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