President Ernest Bai Koroma is to address the Sierra Leone pilgrims that successfully performed the Muslim pilgrimage in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia this year, Chairman of the 2012 Hajj Mission who is also a Special Assistant and personal aide to the President said last night.
Alhaji Sheka Sahid Kamara said the two batches of over 700 pilgrims that arrived home late last week and last Wednesday respectively are to be addressed by the country’s Chief Executive after the Congregational Friday prayers; which is scheduled to take place at State House this afternoon.
The Vice President, Alhaji Abubakar Sidique Sam Sumana, Cabinet Ministers, Religious leaders and other dignitaries are expected to attend.
Meanwhile, the United Council of Imams of Sierra Leone will also present plaques (symbol of the gate of the Holy Kaa’ba) to the President and his Vice as gifts in appreciation and thanks for the sponsorship of 149 of its members from the 149 Chiefdoms across the country to perform this year’s Hajj.
President Koroma has been hailed locally and internationally for the unflinching support he has been given to Sierra Leone pilgrims since he came to power in September 2007.
“I think we should be grateful to our President, Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma for the financial assistance he gave to the 837 pilgrims, including, the Imams, that performed this year’s pilgrimage without discrimination,” an Imam from Valunia Chiefdom in Mongere, Bo District, who benefitted from the Hajj Scholarships said before leaving the Holy land last Wednesday.
Another Imam from Gbane Kandor Chiefdom in the Kono District, said: “ President Koroma is a benevolent leader who has helped to promote religious tolerance in our country. I was not surprised when I saw almost all the pilgrims offering prayers for him, his government and the country on Arafat day. He is indeed a leader with distinguished and positive qualities.”
Meanwhile, over 50 pilgrims are currently in Madinah – they are those that had not got the opportunity to visit the holy sites in Madinah before the Hajj rituals due to late arrival in Saudi Arabia. They are also scheduled to depart soon after completion of their visits to the Holy sites in Madinah.
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