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COVID-19 immunisation compulsory for FCT Muslim pilgrims

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Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Muslim pilgrims have been warned that refusal to be immunised against the deadly coronavirus will automatically disqualify them from this year’s pilgrimage to the holy sites of Saudi Arabia.
The FCT Muslim Pilgrims Board stated that early opportunities have been created for intending pilgrims to obtain their immunization in the six area councils of Abuja from May 31 till mid-June before the actual date of the pilgrims’ departure.

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Director of the board, Mallam Nasiru Danmallam gave the directives in Abuja while explaining to newsmen plans put forward by the FCT Administration to ensure that intending pilgrims fulfil required obligations to qualify for approval to travel.
Danmallam said that immunisation for the 2021 Muslim pilgrimage will be hitch free because the FCT Health Services Department has provided sufficient vaccines and decentralised the centres to ensure that every pilgrim can access immunisation facilities.

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He stated that the immunisation against COVID-19 will commence on May 31st and last for about three weeks in the six area councils so that pilgrims will not have any excuse not to be immunised.
The director warned that intending pilgrims were expected to present their immunisation documents both in Nigeria and at the entry points at Mecca and Medina stressing that the papers are very important because foreigners can even be stopped on the streets by the Police and asked to present their immunization cards for inspection.

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He advised intending pilgrims to access immunisation facilities at government approved hospitals located at their area councils of residence warning that those who refuse or ignore the directive will only have themselves to blame as the Pilgrims Welfare Board does not intend to waive-off the requirement for any pilgrim.

Cyril Mbah, Abuja

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