Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, has charged the 91,000 Nigerian pilgrims currently performing this year’s hajj to use the occasion of significance of the Arafat Day tomorrow (Thursday) to pray for the quick recovery of the nation’s economy and good health for President Muhammdau Buhari.
Saraki further called on the pilgrims to pray for the security, peace, unity and development of the country as according to him, “a prayer for your country and her leaders is as important as asking Allah to grant you your personal wishes.”
Saraki, who is presently in Saudi Arabia for the hajj exercise, in a statement by his Special Adviser (Media and Publicity), Yusuph Olaniyonu, advised Nigerian pilgrims that the gathering of worshippers from all over the world on the plains of the holy Mount Arafat offers a rare opportunity for them to intensify prayers to Almighty Allah to resolve the economic and security challenges facing the country.
The 9th day of Dhul-Hijjah is the day pilgrims gather at the plain of Mount Arafat, at the outskirt of Mecca, praying and supplicating to the Almighty Allah. Arafat Day was also the day Islam was perfected and approved for mankind by the Almighty Allah. The gathering is expected to consist nearly two million faithful from across the world.
Saraki said, “Today our country is passing through a difficult phase of nation building occasioned by economic recession, rising insecurity and threat to our corporate existence as a nation by actions of some citizens.
“The health of our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari, is also of national concern to all, and every opportunity must be utilized to pray for his continuous recuperation for him to continue to restore the lost glory of Nigeria.
“It is therefore not only advisable but necessary for our pilgrims to seize this rare opportunity the Arafat Day offers to offer prayers for our nation to overcome these challenges and for all development plans and policies initiated by government to start yielding fruits but that we as citizens should rededicate ourselves to the service of our country”, he said while reminding the pilgrims that a prayer for one’s nation and her leaders is an indirect route for praying to God to meet their individual needs and aspirations.
“Our people back home should also join in the prayers on the Arafat Day as Muslims believe that wherever you are on this special day, if you supplicate to the Almighty, he will answer the prayers.
“Let Nigerian Muslims in Saudi and those at home devote this day for seeking Allah’s intervention to restore peace in the troubled parts of the country, help our economy to recover, help the leaders to deliver on our promises and solidify the unity and stability of our country so that individual citizens can realize their genuine hopes and aspirations”, the President of the Senate stated.
Saraki, while commending the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) for the effective handling of the hajj exercise, however, charged the agency to ensure maximum welfare and comfort for the pilgrims during the remaining period of their stay in the holy land and during their journey back home.
The Senate President advised the pilgrims to continue to conduct themselves in good and orderly manner while also complying with all laws, regulations and directives by the Saudi authorities aimed at making the remaining period of the hajj exercise hitch-free.
He also commended the authorities of Saudi Arabia for their excellent treatment of Nigerian pilgrims. “I must commend the Saudi authorities on their arrangements for the comfort and welfare of Nigerian pilgrims. This has shown that our relationship with Saudi Arabia is cordial and all efforts must be made by both pilgrims and officials to sustain the good relationship”, he stated.