President Muhammadu Buhari will receive visitors for this year’s Sallah homage at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa, according to reports.
This was confirmed in a statement made available to our newsroom on Friday evening by the senior special assistant to the President on media and publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu.
According to the presidential spokesperson, the traditional Sallah homage was cut off as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and its attendant risks.
But now with infection rates at a very low rate and still falling, there would be a controlled return to the pre-COVID practice of receiving Sallah visitors.
The presidential media aide however pointed out that all those who have been identified and received invitation as part of those to be part of the Sallah visit to the President must undergo the linear Covid-19 test at the State House Conference Centre and obtain a negative test result before they can be admitted to the actual venue which is the State House Banquet Hall.
He added in the statement that it is compulsory for the about 100 persons invited to use face masks at the event.
“Two years after the world’s biggest lockdown to slow the COVID-19 pandemic, the traditional Sallah homage to the President by the residents of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja returns to the Aso Rock Villa,” Shehu said.
He added in the statement that “Although this is a sign of the return to normalcy as infection rates fall to their lowest, those coming on invitation are still required to wear face masks and undergo the linear Covid-19 test at the State House Conference Centre to obtain a negative test result as condition for admittance to the event.
“President Muhammadu Buhari is set to receive the visitors, numbering about 100 at the New State House Banquet Hall at 3:00pm on Sallah Day (Sunday or Monday), itself to be determined by moon sighting to be announced by Islamic authorities in the country.
“Invited Guests for the event, led by Muhammed Musa Bello, the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT include the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the Head of Service, the Senator and House members from the territory, leadership of the FCT Judiciary, Members of the Cabinet, Service Chiefs and heads of security agencies, Muslim and Christian leaderships in the FCT, Council Chairmen, Traditional Rulers and others who received invitations as listed on the manifest.”