NGSG to build new Hajj Camp for smooth exercise
By Hamza Waziri
Governor Mohammed Umaru Bago of Niger State has assured the people of the state of his plans to build a first-class Hajj Camp within the Minna International Airport to ease the movement of intending pilgrims from the state capital to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for Hajj.
Governor Bago, who is presently performing Hajj in Saudi Arabia, gave the assurance when he paid an unscheduled visit to the Niger State camp in Mina, Makka, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
He expressed dismay over the level of poor treatment being meted out to Niger State contingents, adding that the Niger State government would not accept such poor arrangements from the National Hajj Commission (NAHCO). He said after paying the Commission in full, they decided to give them (Nigerlites) substandard accommodation with no adequate facilities, besides being overpopulated.
He said "We are going to build a first-class Hajj camp just within the airport in Minna to reduce the hardship of Muslims, and we are in discussion with Saudi Arabian authorities so that we are going to buy about 100 gas-powered cooking buses so that pilgrims won't suffer anymore".
Governor Bago, while appealing to the pilgrims to take the hardship they were going through as an act of Allah, reminded them that pilgrimage was an act of worship that required patience and sacrifice, adding that he was also subjected to some difficulties even after paying for his Hajj under a private arrangement.
"We are appealing to Nigerites to be patient with different policies of the government that aim at bringing economic prosperity, as it is going to be tough from the beginning, but I am sure that by the grace of God, we will overcome it.
"And as people from Niger State, we are very sure that as we have started, we are going to hit the ground running, and with Allah on our side, we will succeed", he added.
He regretted, however, that the people who handled the Minna Airport project were not serious about it from the beginning because the approval was done on the eve of the last administration.