Using Islam to loot is insanity, Gov Abubakar tells Hajj managers

Bauchi State Governor, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar

BAUCHI State Governor, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar has described as insane, the looting of public treasury through the execution of Hajj just as he stressed that it is one of the worst ways of desecrating the name of Islam by Muslims, people entrusted with managing the conduct of one of the five pillars of Islam.

According to a press statement issued by the Press Secretary to the Governor, Abubakar Al-Sadique, Governor Abubakar who made the statement while receiving the 2017 reports on the 2017 Hajj, described as worrisome the level of desperation for materialism and wealth accumulation for personal use that makes some people to steal using one of the sacred pillars of Islam.

The Governor explained that his administration inherited a debt profile from the execution of the 2014 Hajj, but expressed satisfaction that with the innovations his government introduced and prudent management of resources in the conduct of Hajj, money is being returned into the treasury for two years running, which doubled in the 2017 exercise.

The statement revealed that from the inception of the administration in 2015, Bauchi State has been recording successes in Hajj exercise because of the doggedness of the Hajj teams appointed for the exercise and management, adding that “there is clear departure from the past system, which was a graft, that starts with the creation of artificial scarcity of forms through its sales.”

The Governor, according to the statement, assured that Bauchi State Government is committed to improving the exercise as no stone will be left unturned in future Hajj exercises, and explained on the 2018 Hajj, that E-portal is being prepared for in order to have a successful Hajj exercise and the over 3,000 seats allocated to the state are maintained.

Governor Abubakar tasked the team that leaves for Saudi Arabia in preparation of the 2018 Hajj exercise to eliminate the subsidy on the pilgrimage and maintain the accommodation at lower cost than what was paid in the preceding year.  

The 2017 Amirul Hajj who is also the Speaker of the Bauchi State House of Assembly, Rt Honorable Kawuwa Shehu Damina who announced the return of 71,000 Saudi Riyals to government treasury as unspent funds, said the 2017 Hajj operation was successful, with over 3000 pilgrims from the state performing the Hajj.

The Amirul Hajj who revealed that decent accommodation, transportation and feeding were provided for the pilgrims in Nigeria and the holy land, said preachers and guides were also on hand to ensure that pilgrims performed their religious rites with ease.

Kawuwa Shehu Damina commended the governor for the intervention of 850 Riyals subsidy paid on decent pilgrims’ accommodation within a walking distance to the grand Mosques in Makka and Medina, and lamented that out of the pilgrims from Bauchi State, three died in the Holy Land.

The Amirul Hajj also thanked the Governor for visiting the pilgrims in the holy land and gifts of 300 Riyals he gave to each pilgrim and the 20,000 and 10,000 USD, the First Lady, Hajiya Hadiza Mohammed Abubakar, offered to the preachers.

The Speaker applauded the Governor for the renovation of the Hajj camp in Bauchi and the Pilgrims Welfare Board and urged the State to commence preparation for the 2018 Hajj exercise in earnest as the National Hajj Commission had already release guidelines for the exercise.

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