Ibadan — Minister of State for the Federal Capital Territory, Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide, yesterday urged intending Christian pilgrims to Jerusalem to be good ambassadors of the country while in the holy land.
She gave the charge at an orientation programme held for intending pilgrims for the 2012 holy pilgrimage to Israel in Ibadan.
According to the minister, who was represented by a member of the FCT Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board, Mr Matheau Akintola, there was a need for the intending pilgrims to demonstrate good values as a way of improving the nation's image.
"As you all know, the Federal Government in its continued efforts to change the wrong perception of the international community, considers pilgrimage as an important component of foreign policy and as such, seriously frowns at misconducts such as abscondment during pilgrimage," she said.
She said the orientation programme was aimed at preparing the intending pilgrims spiritually and psychologically before departing for the holy land.
The minister urged the intending pilgrims to pray for the FCT administration and the country as a whole.
"Permit me to further remind you not to lose focus of the primary essence of the pilgrimage exercise, which is to pray for the FCT administration and the country as a whole. It is expected that the benefits from the holy pilgrimage would have direct impact on your spiritual growth and the country as a whole," she added
Also speaking, spokesman for the minister, Alhaji Isiaka Kehinde, cautioned the intending pilgrims against acts capable of tarnishing the good image of the country.