Written by Sarah NEGEDU

2019 Pilgrimage: FCT records zero abscondment

The FCT Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board said it recorded zero-level abscondment in 2019 exercise as against previous years where intending pilgrims fail to show up on the departure dates.

Federal Capital Territory Administration had recorded cases where sponsored pilgrims abandon the exercise after collecting estacodes, thereby constituting loss to the administration.

Speaking on some of the activities of the board in 2019, the director of board, Dabara Vingo, lamented that some airlines have had to fly with less number of Pilgrims due to late arrival or outright absconding of pilgrims who fail to show up for the trip.

According to Vingo, “After completion of preparatory arrangements in Nigeria, some pilgrims are sometimes absent at the departure point due to circumstances beyond their control, as a result, the aircraft flies with empty seats as early notice is not usually given by the pilgrims who could not turn up.”

Recall that the FCTA had recently revealed that it has come up with effective and pre-emptive machinery to apprehend Pilgrims, who might want to abscond from Israel to other countries while on religious exercise.

FCT Minister of State, Dr Ramatu Aliyu while bidding the first batch of FCT Pilgrims farewell at the Nnamdi Azikwe Airport, warned that those who intend to use this opportunity for criminal purposes will also not be spared as they will be made to face the full wrath of the law.

Aliyu who was represented at the occasion by the FCTA Permanent Secretary, Sir Chinyeaka Ohaa, said “I will like to state categorically that for those who may be thinking of absconding once in the Holy Land, the Federal Capital Territory Administration has put an effective and pre-emptive machinery in place to apprehend those who might be planning to use the opportunity of travelling to Jerusalem to abscond to other countries.”

She also noted that the Director, FCT Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board had their own independent verification on ground, they are satisfied that the Board has done its best to ensure a successful pilgrimage.

The Director of the FCT Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board, therefore called on


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