Having completed the Ramadan Umrah rites as prescribed by the Holy Prophet Mohammad (SAW), the first batch of the 2022/1443 A. H. Lagos State Ramadan Umrah (Lesser Hajj) pilgrims have begun their return journey back home with effect from Monday 2nd May, 2022.
The pilgrims who left Nigeria for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in batches since 18th of April, 2022 were accommodated in luxurious hotels both in Medina and Makkah from where they embarked on the rites of Umrah with the assistance of the officials of the Lagos State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board, Ulamah (clerics) and the Hajj guides.
The Ramadan Umrah which falls within the last 10 days in the Holy month of Ramadan is a spiritual exercise which gives Muslims all over the world the opportunity to worship Allah as prescribed by Him and thought by the Holy Prophet.
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The major rites of Umrah according to the teachings and practices of the Holy Prophet, is being in the State of Ihram with intention to perform Umrah, Tawaf (Circumbulation of the Kaabah) seven times and Sa’ yee, i.e. running in-between the hills of Safa and Marwah and clipping or shaving of the hair.
Addressing the pilgrims before departing their hotels for the King Abdul Azeez International Airport, Jeddah, the Hon. Commissioner for Home Affairs, Prince Anofiu Olanrewaju Elegushi, appreciated them for their good conducts throughout their stay in the Kingdom and preserving the good virtues and enviable image (Eko ethos) of the State as its Ambassadors.
Elegushi expressed his gratitude on behalf of the Governor, Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu and his deputy, Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat to Almighty Allah for making seamless and stress-free, the planning and execution of the journey, amongst which is visa procurement, securing befitting hotels, airlifting and feeding during the exercise as well as ensuring that all the pilgrims performed the Umrah rites hale and hearty without any medical challenge or death.
He urged them to reflect on the benefits of Umrah and impart it in their conducts and dealings with their families, friends and businesses back home.
On his part, the Chairman, Lagos State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board, Engr. Shakir Ayinde Gafar, said as the state’s Ambassadors, the pilgrims have further written her name in gold, saying their exemplary conducts have proved to the entire world that it’s citizens are responsible and reliable.
Engr. Gafar said that as the number one State in Nigeria in Hajj and Umrah operations, it would continue to give its pilgrims improved and quality service delivery. He added that nothing would be left untouched in its preparation for the forthcoming Hajj exercise.
No fewer than 156 pilgrims performed the 2022/1443 A. H. Ramadan Umrah with Lagos State and they are to be airlifted in line with the airlines’ schedule till everyone is brought back home. The airlines are Emirates, Qatar and Egypt Air.