The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) says no fewer than 20,000 pilgrims have been transported to Saudi Arabia for this year’s pilgrimage since the exercise started a week ago.
The Media Officer to the Commission, Alhaji Adamu Abdullahi, said in a statement in Abuja on Sunday that reports from the various departure centres across the country indicated that the exercise was going on smoothly.
He said the last batch of 454 intending pilgrims and officials in Ilorin Zone was expected to leave on Monday .
Abdullahi said there was strong indication that given the steady progress made so far and the with the number of aircraft made available for the operation by the airlines, the exercise might be completed before the closure of Saudi Arabia airspace on Sept 4.
He said the first batch of pilgrims from Zamfara, which left the country on Aug 8, was expected to leave the second holy city of Medina on Monday for Mecca after completing their stipulated eight day stay.
Transportation of about 80,000 Nigerians expected to perform this year’s hajj was flagged off on Aug 8 from the Sultan Abubakar III International Airport, Sokoto on Aug 8.
At the occassion the Chairman of NAHCON, Alhaji Abdullahi Mukhtar, had assured the nation that the commission has made adequate arrangement to ensure that the exercise is completed on schedule. (