By Murtala Ade, Kano
Kano state Pilgrims Welfare Board has declared that it will begin administering second dose of COVID-19 vaccine for intending pilgrims from the state on Sunday.
Consequently, the board directed all those who have received the first dose and have also completed their deposits to make themselves available for the second jab at designated centres across the 44 local government areas of the state.
Briefing journalists on preparation for the 2021 Hajj exercise on Saturday, executive secretary of the board, Alh. Abba Mohammad Danbatta disclosed that the state government has provided adequate provision of Astrazeneca vaccines for Kano contingent.
Abba who disclosed that the second jab is specifically meant for those who had successfully received their first dose, insisted that the board may not guaranteed Hajj slot to any fresh depositor who are yet to receive their first dose.
The executive secretary who said the position of the board was in compliance with the Saudi Arabian policy on the COVID-19 pandemic, added that “no compromise would be entertained henceforth”.
Saudi Arabian authorities has made COVID-19 vaccine mandatary for all overseas intending pilgrims willing to perform the spiritual exercise at the holy land this year.
He said that although the Kingdom is yet to announce the modalities to be adopted as n line with Covid-19 protocols, they have however, confirmed the participation of overseas pilgrims under special conditions.
He added that daily orientation on basic education and enlightenment exercise on hajj and likely Saudi Arabian rules as well as the new normal protocol on COVID-19 in the holy land has resumed across its 34 centres.
Abba revealed that Kano state government has approved the refurbishment of a clinic constructed by National Hajj Commission of Nigeria NAHCON, under the Hajj Development Levy Scheme in Kano.
“You will recall that since the government granted approval for the commence of 2021 hajj exercise. The board has not left anything unturned to ensure smooth and successful hajj for our pilgrims.
“Since the vaccination is one of the rudiments mandatory by Saudi government, Kano state Pilgrims board has began to work tirelessly to ensure all our intending pilgrims are vaccinated. We have delivered the first dose and the second jab starts tomorrow.
“As for those who have not received the first dose, the board will not stop them from making deposit but we may not be able to guarantee the journey to the holy land. The reason is that the interval between the first and second jab should not be less than six weeks. Our thinking is that new depositors may not be able to make the hajj in this condition,” he said.
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