Ogun State Governor Covers Travel Allowance Shortfall for Pilgrims

Ogun State Governor Covers Travel Allowance Shortfall for Pilgrims

In a commendable move, Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun has addressed the shortfall in the Basic Travel Allowance (BTA) for the state’s Muslim pilgrims. This shortfall arose due to unexpected fluctuations in foreign exchange rates.

Governor Abiodun covered the BTA differential of ₦119,560,712.70 for all 934 pilgrims heading to the 2024 Hajj. Initially, the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) calculated the hajj fare, including BTA, at ₦1,252.01 per dollar, which provided each pilgrim with $500. However, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) released the BTA at ₦1,530.86 per dollar, reducing the amount each pilgrim received to $415.

The governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Lekan Adeniran, announced this development on Wednesday. Governor Abiodun urged the pilgrims to remain patriotic and pray for the well-being of Ogun State and Nigeria. He highlighted the importance of supporting President Bola Tinubu’s efforts to transform the nation, noting that spiritual backing from all Nigerians is crucial.

“As you embark on this significant spiritual journey, please pray for the continued progress and transformation in Ogun State initiated by our administration,” Abiodun said. “Likewise, our President, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, requires your prayers to sustain his brave and selfless efforts to reshape our nation’s future.”

Sheik Iskeel Lawal Sugar, the governor’s consultant on Islamic Affairs, expressed gratitude for Abiodun’s timely intervention and prayed for the administration’s ongoing success.

This financial support came just days after the first and second batches of 845 pilgrims from Ogun State arrived in Medina, Saudi Arabia, to perform the Hajj. The first group landed at Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Airport on Sunday at around 11:15 am, followed by the second group on Monday, arriving via Flynas Airline.

Governor Abiodun’s proactive approach ensures that Ogun State pilgrims can focus on their spiritual journey without financial stress, reflecting his administration’s commitment to the welfare of its citizens.

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