Bauchi — The Bauchi State government said yesterday that pilgrims from the state will be airlifted from Gombe instead of the newly built Bauchi international airport due to the fact that work is still on-going.
Senior Special Adviser to Governor Isa Yuguda on Hajj Affairs Alhaji Sunusi Sarkin Aska stated this yesterday while briefing newsmen on the preparations for airlift of pilgrims to Saudi Arabia for this year's exercise.
The government had earlier stated that pilgrims from the state would be airlifted from the newly built airport.
"Our pilgrims will be airlifted from Gombe because there are some minor finishing touches that have to be made at the Bauchi International Airport; like the landing lights at both sides of the tarmac to enable take off of flights at night. The contractor said the job will be completed in a couple of weeks, if it is completed before the stipulated date, the pilgrims will be airlifted from Bauchi. But if not, they will return from Saudi Arabia through the airport," he said.
He said other logistics have been put in place to ensure a hitch free exercise. Daily Trust gathered that airlift of pilgrims from the state is expected to commence on Saturday, September 28.
He added that the state Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board has secured 2082 visas for the pilgrims and that the remaining would be secured in the next two days.