Pilgrimage Not For Politics Or Religion, Says Gowon

Yakubu_GowonFormer Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon (retd.), has urged Christians who embark on holy pilgrimage to see it as an opportunity to intercede for Nigeria and not for politics or religion.
He said the call became necessary due to the Boko Haram insurgency.
A statement issued on Saturday in Abuja by the Head of Media, Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission, Mr. Celestine Ogugua, quoted the former head of state as saying this while featuring as a guest of honour during the maiden Jerusalem pilgrims’ sensitisation/appreciation dinner organised by the commission.
The statement quoted Gowon as saying, “The sensitisation of pilgrims is to pray for ourselves and the nation and not just another adventure in tourism. Pilgrimage is a spiritual exercise where you pray for yourself, the nation and your family. It is not for politics or religion”.
The elder statesman encouraged sponsors of pilgrims not to relent in doing good and to continue to be a source of blessing to the lives of others who could not afford the cost of pilgrimage.
He also hailed the Executive Secretary of NCPC, Mr. John-Kennedy Opara, for his excellence, hard work and commitment, which, he said, had changed the face of Christian pilgrimage in Nigeria.
Earlier, Opara thanked all Jerusalem pilgrims for honouring the invitation to dine together, saying, “You have gathered to affirm greatness and with God on our side, we shall succeed in this drive”.