November 10, 2009

Pilgrimage: CAN accuses Nothern Govs of discrimination…petitions NCPC

By Chinyere Amalu

ABUJA—Christians in the northern parts of the country are protesting refusal by some northern state governors to sponsor them to holy land for the pilgrimage, saying they are being discriminated against.

Based on this, some state chapters of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) have petitioned the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC) on the development, calling for intervention.

Also over 20, 000 pilgrims are expected to make it to the Holy land this year. It is also expected that about 1, 500 intending pilgrims would be given opportunity to take part in the pilot scheme to Rome this year.

Briefing newsmen on the state of readiness for 2009 pilgrimage exercise, in Abuja, the Executive Secretary of NCPC, Mr. John Kennedy Okpara, said, “though some northern state governors have complied, majority of them are yet to respond despite all appeals by the Commission.

“While governors in the south sponsor on a yearly basis, Christians and Muslims on Holy pilgrimage, their northern counterparts have been sponsoring only Muslims without being sensitive to the yearnings of the Christians in their domain”.