Investigate activities of Nigerian Christian Pilgrims’ Commission – CAN Chairman to EFCC, ICPC

The Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC) is in a mess and unable to plan Christian pilgrimage properly, the Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Adamawa State chapter, Bishop Dami Mamza, has alleged.

Bishop Mamza who is also the Catholic Bishop of Yola made the allegation on Thursday during a press briefing at the Catholic Secretariat in Yola, maintaining that disservice of the NCPC to Christian pilgrims is an embarrassment to Christianity.

Mamza cited the examples of a pilgrimage to Rome six months ago and one, last month which he said were handled most improperly by the NCPC, prompting him to speak out.

He asked either the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) or the Independent Corrupt Practices and Related Offenses Commission (ICPC) to investigate the activities of the Executive Secretary of the NCPC, Rev Yakubu Pam and sanitise the commission.

The Adamawa CAN Chairman said at the news briefing Thursday morning: “I want to make a statement regarding the pilgrimage we had about six months ago. Adamawa government made adequate provisions for Christian pilgrims to go to Rome.

“Our experience was awful but I didn’t say anything when we returned because I wanted to reflect on things. But since then, for the past six months, my conscience has been bothering me regarding the activities at the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission under the leadership of Rev Yakubu Pam.

“The pilgrimage of Adamawa Christians to Rome if not because I was on the team and as the team leader, Adamawa pilgrims would have been stranded in Rome. The government of Adamawa gave adequate resources but the arrangement by the Nigerian Pilgrims Commission was nought. Nothing was done.

”The pilgrims arrived in Rome but some of us had no room to stay. No buses were provided to move around. “Some spent one night and had to return the next day because no accommodation was provided. There was no feeding arrangement. I had to go to my account in the Vatican Bank to withdraw money and make arrangements for some pilgrims. The national pilgrim’s body collected the money (paid for the stay of pilgrims) and didn’t make arrangements.”

Bishop Mamza alleged further that there was no proper pre-visit by the NCPC to Rome before the arrival of pilgrims there, adding, “The pilgrims who were supposed to spend a minimum of one week, spent a maximum of five days, and it was my resources that I spent to extend people’s stay there so that they could have the feeling of Rome.”

He said he was silent all the while because he wanted to see if there would be an improvement in a pilgrimage organised last month by the NCPC executive secretary himself, which he said he understood to be even worse than the exercise of six months ago.

“So, the Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission is in a mess. I call on the Federal Government to let the activities of Rev Yakubu Pam at the NCPC be investigated,” he said,

The priest added that a Christian commission should be an example for others to follow. “I won’t even hesitate to ask that the EFCC or ICPC investigate the activities of the NCPC.

The place should be sanitized,” Bishop Mamza charged.

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