The Kano State Government said it has paid N460 million accommodation subsidy for its 5,600 Hajj pilgrims to Saudi Arabia in 2016.
The State’s Deputy Governor, Hafiz Abubakar, made this known while launching a training workshop for the state pilgrims in Kano on Saturday.
Mr. Abubakar, a professor, said the state government found it necessary to pay the money in order to secure decent accommodation for the pilgrims.
According to him, the state government had already secured houses for the pilgrims very close to the Ka’aba, (Holy mosque) in Mecca.
“All the houses secured for the pilgrims are close to the Ka’aba (Holy Mosque) in Mecca.
“This will give our pilgrims the opportunity to stay closer to the Mosque as required,” Mr. Abubakar said.
He urged the pilgrims to avoid taking any prohibited items including kola nuts along as the Saudi authorities had taken measures to arrest anybody who violated their laws.
Earlier, the Executive Secretary of the State Pilgrims Welfare Board, Abba Yakubu, said the state government had selected two airlines, Max Air and Azman Air to transport its pilgrims to Saudi Arabia.
Mr. Yakubu said the state government had made adequate arrangement to feed the pilgrims twice daily in Mecca and Medina.
He urged the pilgrims to ensure that they were immunized against cerebro-spinal-meningitis, yellow fever and other diseases, saying that the immunization would commence on July 25.
Mr. Yakubu also directed female intending pilgrims to go for pregnancy test in the designated health centres, adding that no pregnant women would be allowed to travel for Hajj.
“The board will commence the pregnancy test on July 25; therefore, all female pilgrims are expected to go for the screening to ascertain their pregnancy status,” he said.
The daily training programme was organised to educate the pilgrims on the Hajj rites.