By Newsie Events Media:
Yakubu Pam, the Executive Secretary, Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC), has stated that
in this year’s pilgrimage, Nigerian Christian pilgrims will only visit the Kingdom of Jordan and not Israel due to ongoing conflict in the Gaza region.
This position was communicated on Saturday, in a statement in Jos, by Ayuba Pam, the spokesman to the executive secretary.
According to the spokesman, the executive secretary during a live NTA programme on Friday night, in Jos, did offer explanation and said that the insistence by the Israeli Government that pilgrims must take their own version of COVID-19 vaccines was another reason for the Jordan pilgrimage.
In addition , Mr Pam noted that Jordan also has over 100 holy sites for pilgrims to visit, insisting it will not change the purpose of the spiritual exercise.
“Jordan has many holy sites just like Israel. There are more than 100 holy sites all over the world and by the mandate given to the Commission by the 2007 Act of Parliament that Established it pilgrims can visit all these sites.
“But the decision to embark on the Jordan pilgrimage was due to Israel’s insistence on Nigeria to accept her version of the COVID-19 vaccination.
“Also, the war in Gaza which will provide security challenges to pilgrims is another key reason.
The NCPC boss asserted that the purpose of the pilgrimage is to invoke the spirit of God upon Nigeria and the people, and not mere tourism.
On why pilgrims would be airlifted from Jos and not Abuja, he said that the decision was aimed at reducing the hardships faced by pilgrims in the past.
“The airlift of Christian pilgrims from Jos to Jordan is going to reduce the hardship being faced by pilgrims in the past, who had to travel under severe risks to Abuja.
“The challenge faced by pilgrims during such operations travelling from far distances to Abuja is exposing them to dangers of insecurity and health challenges,” Mr Pam explained.
The executive secretary thanked the Plateau Government for supporting the commission by ensuring its plan to move pilgrims directly from Jos to Jordan became a reality.
The first batch of pilgrims would be airlifted on July 24, at the Yakubu Gowon International Airport, Heipang, near Jos.
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