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Hajj: First batch of Kwara pilgrims depart for Saudi Arabia

The first batch of 560 intending Pilgrims from Kwara state have been airlifted to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia from Ilorin International Airport.

The pilgrims departed the airport on board Max Airline aircraft at about 05:40AM on Sunday.

The departure was witnessed by Kwara Amirul Hajj and Executive Secretary of the state Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board, Dr Awwal Ibrahim as well as other government functionaries.

Addressing newsmen shortly before the departure, Dr Ibrahim urged the intending pilgrims to be good ambassadors of the state and the country while in the Holy Land.

In his remark, the Executive Secretary of Kwara state Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board, Abdulganiyu Ahmed said the successful take-off of the inaugural flight was due to the extra efforts by the state government.

He attributed the delay in the transportation of pilgrims to the late outcome of PCR test results, stressing that it was compulsory for every intending pilgrim to know the result of the PCR test at least 72 hours before the journey.

One of the intending pilgrims, Yemi Lawal-Rabana, in an interview with journalists, expressed satisfaction with the arrangement put in place by the board.

A total of 1,500 intending Pilgrims are expected to perform year 2022 Hajj from Kwara state.

Reporting by Ali Rabiu; Editing by Adeniyi Bakare and Tony Okerafor