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Pilgrimage: Okowa urges thorough screening to stem absconding ~ Truth Reporters

Delta Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, has called for thorough screening of intending pilgrims to Jerusalem to stem recurring cases of absconding of some pilgrims in the Holy Land.

Okowa made the call on Tuesday while swearing-in Apostle Sylvannus Okorote as his Special Adviser on Religious Matters and the inauguration of members of Boards of seven  parastatals in Asaba.

He said that there was need for a screening process devoid of sentiment in order to prevent re-occurrence of pilgrims absconding after arriving at the holy land.

“The issue of people absconding in Jerusalem rather than going for the purpose for which they were sent there is becoming very worrisome and a lot of work is to be done to check this trend.

``There have been information showing that three persons absconded in the current pilgrimage; there will be an investigation to look into the sources where the recommendations for these individuals came from.

``This is because such incident is very embarrassing and that is unacceptable from our state; so, the process of screening for pilgrimages must be one that is thorough; one that is devoid of sentiment.

``When we find those responsible for this mishap, they will no longer be allowed to make recommendations now and in the future,” he said.

The governor charged chairmen of the boards to work in harmony with the management of the parastatals and agencies, saying the boards would provide the policy guidelines and ensure efficient management of resources.

According to him, doing so will enable them to achieve the set objectives and targets of the parastatals and agencies.

He added that the inaugurations and swearing-in were in line ``with our goal of strengthening this administration for optimal performance.
``I want to urge the management and board members to realise that when you work together it is more likely to achieve greater strides in the development of our state.

``This should be clearly understood to minimize friction and I believe that the common goal for all to have is to perform at our various agencies and be able to do our duties”.

Chairmen of the boards are Mr Felix Ofuo (Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba), Dr Ifeanyi Osuoza (Delta Broadcasting Service, Warri) and Chief David Oghenekevwe (Delta Printing and Publishing Company Ltd.).

Others are Dr Austin Obidi (Hospitals Management Board), Mr Emmanuel Utomi (Delta Development and Property Authority), Princess Tina Amuamuziam (Tourism) and Bishop Cyril Odutemu (Christian Pilgrims Welfare Board).

In his response, Okorote thanked the governor for the appointment and assured that religious bodies in the state would contribute meaningfully to the achievement of his stronger Delta agenda.

Also responding on behalf of Board chairmen, Dr Austin Obidi pledged that they would carry out their duties to the service of Deltans dedicatedly.

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