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Hajj 2019: FG, three air carriers sign deals as final preparation begins

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Hajj 2019: FG, three air carriers sign deals as final preparation begins

The Federal Government and three air carriers have signed deals in final preparation for the kick off of Hajj 2019 operations. The Hajj rites, checks by New Telegraph showed, would tentatively commence on Friday, 9th of August 2019 and continue till Wednesday, 14th of August 2019. This is the tentative date as the actual date is contingent on the sighting of the moon of Dhul Hijjah. The three airlines approved by the presidency for 2019 Hajj operations are Max Air Ltd, Medview Airlines Plc, and FlyNas of Saudi Arabia.

Max Air was allocated 51 per cent slot for pilgrims airlift from Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Gombe , Jigawa, Kano, Katsina, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger, Plateau, Taraba and Kogi states. Medview has been allocated 14 per cent to airlift pilgrims from Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Ekiti, Enugu, Kaduna, Ogun, Ondo, Yobe, Abia, Imo, Anambra, Bayelsa, Rivers and Armed Forces. Flynas is charged with the transportation of 35 per cent slot to airlift pilgrims from Sokoto, Oyo, Osun, FCT, Edo, Kebbi, Lagos and Zamfara states. During an Airlift Signing Agreement held at the head office of National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), in Abuja, the chairman of the commission, Abdullahi Muhammad, enjoined the approved air carriers to discharge their responsibilities diligently. He told them that they owe a moral responsibility to the pilgrims and to God to whom the pilgrims are ‘special guests.’

He said they also owe a moral duty to the commission for selecting them. While declaring that there is no room for failure in the Hajj exercise, the NAHCON helmsman charged the airline operators to liaise with the necessary security agencies in ensuring safety and security of pilgrims. Meanwhile, Governor Ahmadu Fintiri of Adamawa State has raised concern over poor preparations for this year’s Muslim pilgrimage by the last administration. Receiving officials of Muslim Council in the state who paid him Sallah homage at Government House, Yola, on Tuesday, the governor said the outgone regime should be held responsible should pilgrims from the state miss the exercise “If there is any problem with hajj exercise this year, blame the past administration; they did not do anything about preparations and you know hajj issue is being handled by Saudi Arabia, which does not tolerate foot-dragging.

“The last administration did not do what it ought to do and we now have serious problem on ground. “We are trying to see if we can have any opening, no matter how little, for us to do the needful and save the situation,” Mr. Fintiri said. He said the Secretary to the State Government, Bashir Ahmad, was already making contacts with relevant authorities for an opening.

The governor lauded the Muslim Council for its role in promoting peaceful coexistence in the state, and urged it to sustain the tempo. Earlier, the State Chairman of the Council, Sahabo Magaji, said they were at government House to pay homage and celebrate with the new governor.

Mr. Magaji lauded him for paying two months’ salary to workers, adding that the measure had enabled workers to celebrate Eid el Fitr in good mood. “This is a good beginning and the people of Adamawa will continue to look forward to more goodies as promised by your administration,” Mr. Magaji said. He promised the support and cooperation of the council to the administration to enable it succeed.

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  1. QQ Online

    July 5, 2019 at 7:49 pm

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Islam

IRK, Arabic teachers’ shortage rocks South-West schools

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IRK, Arabic teachers’ shortage rocks South-West schools
  • NACOMYO demands fairness in religious teachers’ employment

 

The public primary and secondary schools in South West states of Nigeria are being rocked with the dearth of teachers for Islamic Religious Knownledge (IRK) and Arabics.

Apex body of Muslims youth in Nigeria,  National Council of Muslim Youth Organisations (NACOMYO), which declared this, mentioned Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Ondo, and Ekiti as the affected states.

This came just as the Ogun State government has said that plans are underway to address dearth of Islamic Religious Knowledge (IRK) and Arabic teachers in public primary and secondary schools in the state.

Odun state coordinator of NACOMYO, Dr. Solih Amolegbe, who lodged the complaint during the Hijrah 1441 AH celebration in Abeokuta, maintained that the issue of imbalance noticed in the employment of IRK and Arabics teachers should be address in the spirit of fairness.

Meanwhile, the Ogun state governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, stated that his state had commenced action to address the issue.

The governor, represented at the event by his deputy, Mrs Noimot Salako-Oyedele, said the issue had been brought to the attention of the concerned stakeholders like the Teaching Service Commission (TESCOM) and State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) and it was being looked into.

“Most of your requests as the National Association of Muslim Youth Organisations (NACOMYO) are already known to us since we took office. I can reliably tell you that the concern that you have with the IRK and Arabic teachers is being looked into by TESCOM and SUBEB to make sure that we have equitable distribution of dividend of democracy,” he said.

The governor hinted at the Okowo-Dapo, a scheme that would give interest-free loans to grass-roots women across the state for business purposes which, he said, would be launched in a few days.

The programme, according to him, is a replica of the Federal Government’s Trader Moni programme and will give a start-up loan of N10,000 and then N100,000 if the applicants are faithful in payment.

“In the next few days, different sectors would start to register in order to take part in this programme,” he said.

Governor Abiodun congratulated the Muslim faithful on witnessing the start of Hijrah 1441 and solicited for support, especially in prayers, in order to achieve his good governance policies.

Earlier in his welcome address, the state coordinator of NACOMYO, Dr Amolegbe, had noted the significance of Hijrah in the lives of Muslims, saying it was an occasion to remind the faithful of the period of steadfastness during the migration of the early Muslims under the leadership of Prophet Muhammad in the face of tribulation of Makkah’s pagans.

He  said NACOMYO, as the apex body and rallying point for all Muslim youth organisations in the state and the country at large, called on Muslim youths in the state to eschew violence and be law abiding citizens so as to enable the government to achieve its statutory responsibilities.

Speaking on the theme of the New Year celebration, “Historical Value of Hijrah on International Integration,” the guest lecturer, Dr Saheed Olurotimi from the Department of Foreign Languages, Lagos State University, emphasised the need for re-education, reorientation and rededication for the achievement of national unity and development.

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Hijrah connotes migration from sin to righteousness –NSCIA

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Hijrah connotes migration from sin to righteousness –NSCIA

The highest body of Muslims in Nigeria, Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), has declared that Hijrah connotes migration from evil to righteousness.

Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, who is the leader of the NSCIA, declared this in a document in which he reiterated that the significance of the New Hijrah Year is the opportunity it accords a Muslim to turn a new leaf, set his priorities right and evaluate himself as a way of preparing for the Judgement Day.

As a matter of fact, Hijrah, Abubakar said; “connotes migrating from what is evil and despicable to what is good and righteous. This should be the resolve of every Muslim as the New Year begins.”

He continued: “This year’s Hijrah New Year message is anchored on the theme, “A FRESH START”, with the hope that it will engender a positive paradigm shift from disbelief to belief, hypocrisy to sincerity, lethargy to activeness, conflict to peace and ma’siyah (sinfulness) to taa’ah (obedience) among us. The hope is that Allah will bring about positive changes in the affairs of Muslims and the whole country at large.”

Meanwhile, Allah has unequivocally averred that He would not change the condition of a people until they change their own condition or attitudes (Q.13:11), he said, adding that it therefore behooves Muslims to return sincerely to Allah with a view to making themselves better than they were before now. It is also an opportunity for the faithful to renew their faith in Allah, in spite of the plethora of challenges facing the Ummah, because as Allah says in the Glorious Qu’ran, “Surely, with difficulty is ease” (Q94:6).

“While we appreciate the military and the security agencies for the sacrifices they are making in serving and preserving our dear country, we use this medium to urge them to nip our security challenges in the bud by focusing more on intelligence gathering and engaging more in functional inter-agency synergy, instead of what appears as unhealthy inter-agency rivalry. There should be a firm commitment by them to stamp out banditry and kidnapping and extirpate terrorism and other forms of insecurity from our land. They should make a fresh start in this regard and engage in deep soul-searching,” he added.

Also, the Council calls on the new Ministers especially those handling economic portfolios to focus on policies and programmes that will translate to reality the economic and social objectives of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan of the Federal Government, in a way that will impact positively on the lives of the ordinary Nigerians.

“As leaders, they, just like our Governors and legislators, should appreciate that their core responsibilities lie in protecting people, promoting their wellbeing and providing for them,” the NSCIA said.

Muslims in particular and Nigerians in general must, according to the group, continue to be patriotic and loyal to the country as Nigeria is the only country that we have. We must be committed to making Nigeria work not just because of today but also because of the future of our children. The ship of Nigeria must not sink and it is our collective responsibility to play our parts in this regard.

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Clerics advocate genotype, HIV/AIDS tests for intending Muslim couples

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Clerics advocate genotype, HIV/AIDS tests for intending Muslim couples

Council of Islamic Scholars has advocated genotype and HIV/AIDS tests for intending Muslim couples in Nigeria.

The group particularly urged the government of Kastina state to enact law, which would compel intending couples in the state to know their health status before being joined in holy matrimony.

The Katsina State Council of the scholars said this through its secretary, Alhaji Shehu Adoro, when the council paid a courtesy visit to Gov. Aminu Masari in Katsina.

Many couples, he said, have become victims of HIV/AIDS scourge because of the absence of such law.

“Kano and Jigawa states have enacted such law which now forces intending couples to carry out the test before being joined together,” he said, adding that the “states are already reaping the fruits; they have succeeded in reducing the cases of HIV/AIDS among couples.”

The law should, according to Adoro, also mandate intending couples to undertake genotype to prevent rising cases of sickle cell in children.

Governor Masari had, earlier, urged the council to work with his government to modernise the “Almajiri” (Islamic) system of education.

He particularly expressed concern over the lack of shelter for such “Almajiri” children, and regretted that most of them sleep on bare floors around street corners.

The governor said that his administration was ready to work with Islamic scholars to provide water and other necessary facilities for such children to improve their living standards.

He also urged the council to regulate the activities of Islamic preachers so as to avoid conflicts and breakdown of law and order.

The Kaduna state had earlier toe this line and ever since the announcement of a proposed bill by the state government some citizens across the nation have condemned the bill, with many describing it as obnoxious.

The bill, currently before the Kaduna state House of Assembly, has also drawn the anger of religious bodies and religious leaders within the state.

Barnabas Bala, the deputy governor of Kaduna state, said the bill aims to protect the state from religious extremism and hate speech.

According to him, the Kaduna state government is always committed to ensuring that religion can be practiced in a safe and secure climate.

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Cleric underscores virtues of peaceful co-existence

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Cleric underscores virtues of peaceful co-existence

The Muslim faithful in Nigeria has been tasked to pray fervently for peace, security and development in the country. Chief Imaam, Young Muslim Brothers and Sisters (YOUMBAS), Ogun State and Republic of Benin, Sheikh Najeemdeen Yusuf Aduralongba, made the call at a special programme organised by the organisation to commemorate Hijrah 1441. While congratulating Muslims on the Islamic New Year, Muharram 1441 AH, Aduralongba urged them to continue to live in peace with people of other faith for the overall development of the country.

He also urged them to pray for peace and development of Ogun state and Nigeria at large. According to him, peace is the necessary requirement for the development of any society. “Peace is priceless and non-negotiable; no society can achieve meaningful development without peace and unity,” he said.

Aduralongba who doubles as the Mufti of Bode Olude Community in Odeda Local Government area of Ogun state said; “It is in view of this that I want to use this medium to call on Muslims and other Nigerians to pray for peace, unity, security and development in the country.” He also called for prayers and support for President Muhammadu Buhari and all political office holders to enable them to succeed in the tasks ahead of them.

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Why we petitioned NASS over Hijra holiday, by MURIC

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Why we petitioned NASS over Hijra holiday, by MURIC

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has declared that it petitioned the National Assembly on clamour for Hijrah holiday based on its belief in no-violence approach to advocacy. Muslims all over the world celebrated Hijrah Day as the new Islamic Year kicked off on Monday 2nd September, 2019 corresponding to 1st Muharram, 1441.

However, MURIC, said in a statement that it had a grouse with the Federal Government of Nigeria (FG) over the nondeclaration of the day as a public holiday. MURIC, an Islamic human rights organization, therefore decided to take its case to the 9th National Assembly (NASS). The group accused FG of being unfair to Nigerian Muslims in the manner it shares out its public holidays. According to MURIC, 1st Muharram is the Islamic version of 1st January. The former therefore deserves recognition like the latter if indeed Nigeria is not a Christian state.

MURIC in a statement by its Director, Professor Ishaq Akinsele, argued, “What is good for the goose is good for the gander. It is unfair of FG to recognize 1st January for Christians while closing its eyes to 1st Muharram. It is one of the ways by which government has marginalized Nigerian Muslims. This must stop. A government which seeks peaceful coexistence should practice parity, justice and fairness.

“We complained last year by issuing a statement on 6th September, 2018 entitled ‘Declare Hijray Day Next Week’. That was one week to 1st Muharram 1440. Yet nothing happened. In actual fact, our statement of 6th September, 2018 was a followup to our press release of 3rd January, 2018 on the same matter.

“We have been making this particular demand on a yearly basis for more than fifteen (15) years but FG continues to ignore our demand. It must be emphasized that Islamic organizations (not MURIC alone) have been making this demand through petitions and appeals dating back to the 60s but successive administrations have turned the deaf ear to their pleas. “What kind of language does government want aggrieved Muslims to adopt before getting attention? What is FG goading us into? Several options are on the table: rallies, demonstrations, sit-ins, boycotts, legal action, etc. The only option we will never pick is violence because the motto of MURIC is ‘Dialogue, No Violence’.

“But even the other options have their disadvantages. For instance, rallies and demonstrations can be hijacked by hoodlums to cause mayhem thereby tarnishing the image of the organisers. They also have the tendency of hurting innocent people. This is why we always hesitate to organize rallies and demonstrations. They should be the last options.

“In view of the nonchalant attitude of successive governments at the center for more than two decades, nay, since indepence, we are constrained to appeal to the National Assembly (NASS) to take up this issue as a matter of urgent public interest. Nigerian lawmakers should not wait until reckless and violent groups hijack this agitation.

“We remind Nigerian lawmakers that the declaration of every first day of the Islamic year as a holiday can be one of the steps that Nigeria should take towards deradicalisation. “It will send a strong message to Boko Haram that FG is addressing some of the grudges mentioned by Muslims.

It may eventually lead to the surrender of large number of insurgents. It can also be used by liberal Muslims like us to soften the hearts of elements of the extreme left,” thr statement read. Akintola continued: “This is how nations seeking genuine integration win wars and not ordinary battles.

“MURIC hails state governors who have recognized 1st Muharram and declared them as public holidays. In particular, we pay tribute to the former governors Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola (Osun, now Minister of Internal Affairs) and Isiaka Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo) for their pivotal roles in this regard. Posterity will certainly engrave their names in letters of gold. “On a last note, we appeal to the NASS to take a dispassionate look at the demand of Muslims for the recognition of the first day of the Islamic calendar just as the first day of the Christian calendar is given recognition.”

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Saudi clerics advocate peaceful propagation of Islam in Nigeria

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Saudi clerics advocate peaceful propagation of Islam in Nigeria

Islamic scholars from Saudi Arabia have advocated peaceful propagation of Islam in Nigeria and all other parts of the World. The clerics said this when they met with their Nigerian counterparts in Ilorin, Kwara State to brainstorm on how to bring about peaceful propagation of Islam. At the conference with the theme: Correcting The Wrongs In Society: Its Principles And Skills, the scholars averred that some Muslims have a wrong perception about the concept of jihad in propagating Islam.

They cited various historical events such as the relocation (Hijrah) of the Prophet of Islam from his birthplace, Makkah to Madinah, with the purpose of giving peace a chance between the Muslim faithful and the then unbelievers of Makkah.

The conference, organised by Darul Ikhtab Wa Sunnah, Ilorin in collaboration with the Nayat Centre, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, was the fifth in the series, as similar events had been held in Abuja, Lagos, and Ogun states. Lead speaker at the conference, Shaykh Solih Ibn Ali Abu al-Khayl of the Saudi Arabia Islamic Centre, admonished those interested in propagating Islam to do so peacefully and in accordance with the dictates of the Holy Qur’an and traditions of Prophet Mohammed. While reminding Islamic clerics responsible for propagating Islam (Dawah) that Islam abhors violence in whatever form and guise, he said acting in accordance with the tenets of the Holy Qur’an will ensure peace among Muslim faithful and adherents of other faiths. Speaking, proprietor of Darul Ikhtab Wa Sunnah, Dr. AbdulKadir Salman Solagberu, said the conference was organised to acquaint Islamic scholars with the best ways of propagating Islam towards ensuring peaceful coexistence among people of various faiths.

He said there is a greater need for social interaction among human beings of various religious beliefs and this could only be achieved through peace. Solagberu explained that Islam forbids terrorism in all its ramifications, urging those who have embraced terrorism as a means of propagating Islam to desist from the ungodly act. Also speaking, a resource person at the conference, Dr. AbdulHamid Badmas of the University of Ilorin, urged Islamic scholars to engage in constructive criticisms, while trying to correct societal ills or personalities, rather than being combative or resorting to names calling.

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How Nigerian nurse died after Hajj – NAHCON

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How Nigerian nurse died after Hajj – NAHCON

The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has a graphical detail of how a Nigerian nurse, Aminu Rufa’i, died after Hajj in Saudi Arabia. Mr Rufa’i, a pilgrim, was from Zaria Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Spokesperson for the commission, Fatima Usara, who said this in a statement, maintained that over 9,000 pilgrims have returned to Nigeria from Saudi Arabia after this year’s hajj exercise. Airlift of Nigerian pilgrims back into the country is in its ninth day having begun as scheduled, on the 17th of August, 2019.

The two participating airlines, namely Max Air and FlyNas have operated a total of 21 flights that conveyed 9, 658 pilgrims back to Nigeria. Distribution of the flights so far shows Max Air has conveyed 5,428 pilgrims in 11 trips while FlyNas on its part transported 4,306 pilgrims in 10 flights.

Max Air has conducted flights to Katsina, Kaduna, Kano, Kwara, Kogi, Nasarawa, plus a special flight to Federal Capital Territory. The special flight conveyed few pilgrims and officials that formed the advance team of officials into the kingdom from the National Medical, Media and Ulama teams as well as some NAHCON staff on essential duties. Meanwhile, FlyNas has conducted flights to Lagos, Kebbi, Zamfara Sokoto and Osun. It also conveyed some pilgrims from Oyo, Ogun, Cross River, Delta, Abia and Edo states back to Nigeria.

“On a sad note, the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria mourns the passing away of one of its National Medical Team members, Nurse Aminu Rufa’i from Zaria Local Government of Kaduna State who died in his sleep. “Nurse Aminu was apparently healthy at the time he went to bed. His remains have since been buried according to Islamic rites,” the commission said. The Chairman, on behalf of the management and staff of NAHCON, the NAHCON statement read further, “prays Almighty Allah gives his family the fortitude to bear the loss.”

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Pay attention to your wards, Hamzat tells parents

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Pay attention to your wards, Hamzat tells parents

Wife of the Lagos State Deputy Governor, Mrs. Oluremi Hamzat has called on parents to pay special attention to their wards to prevent them from developing attributes capable of destroying the society. The deputy governor’s wife, who said that the existence of human race especially that of the children is constantly threatened by the the act immorality perpetrated by some misguided children, warned that parents, guardians and other caregivers must pay special and attention on their wards to enable them actualise their dream.

Speaking at an Eid-el- Kabir party oragnised for the Muslim children at the Lagos State Secretariat Mosque, Mrs. Hamzat charged the parents to develop special interest in the attributes exhibited by their children with a view to knowing the kind of information they are exposed to. Mrs. Hamzat who was represented by the Director of Admin and Human Resources, Ministry of Education, Mrs. Folashade Lediju, said: ”We need to pay attention to our children. Allah (SWT) wants us to look after them properly. We must all remember today’s celebration epitomizes true act of sacrifice, obedience, dedication, devotion , submission to the will of Almighty Allah and ultimately the benefit of sharing with others, particularly the needy.

This why the portion of the ram slaughtered is given to this categorical of people.” ”We must therefore not lose focus of the essence of of the celebration but ask ourselves question such as: ‘What have I sacrificed for others to enjoy? ‘What have I done positively to impact on mankind? ‘How have I lifted the spirit of someone who is dejected or depressed?” On his part, Alhaji Oladimeji Animashaun, said that the significance of the children’s party was to educate, entertain and reward the children according to the dictates of Islam. He charged the children to be obedient to their parents at all times in order to receive the blessings of Allah as Prophet Ismail did when he obeyed his father, Prophet Ibrahim.

One of the guest speakers, Adulazeez Abdul Hakeem, said parent must ensure that values are not taken away from the children through exposure to the social media. ”We need to continuously realise that that values, culture and traditions are part of us. Somebody cannot just come and say my culture is archaic. The culture which they are giving us is animalistic. It is animal that doesn’t respect their parents.

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Hajj 2019: How 9 Nigerian pilgrims died in Saudi Arabia –NAHCON

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Hajj 2019: How 9 Nigerian pilgrims died in Saudi Arabia –NAHCON

More details have emerged on nine Nigerian pilgrims who participated in the 2019 Hajj pilgrimage died in Saudi Arabia. Chairman of National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) medical team, Dr Ibrahim Kana, who gave confirmed the death of the pilgrims, noted that the number of fatalities increased following the collapse of a female pilgrim from Lagos state, Alhaja Folashade Lawal. Lawal is from Oshodi local government area. “We lost a pilgrim Sunday at the Jamarat (during the symbolic stoning of Shai’tan). She actually collapsed. She was immediately evacuated from the Jamarat area to a facility called Mina Adisu Hospital. She eventually died. She is a known hypertensive.

“There is a possibility that the fact that she is a known hypertensive, she may have had fully heart disease that actually triggered the collapse and she subsequently died. She is from Lagos,” Kana said. He had earlier that three pilgrims from Kano, two from Katsina, one each from Sokoto, and Nasarawa as well as one international pilgrim had died in this year’s Hajj.

The commissioner-in-charge of health matters said the newly medical caravan had reduced the rate at which patients were referred to the Saudi hospitals except those who were critically ill, adding that it was now much easier for the pilgrims to walk into tents where the clinics were located to present their complaints.

“For example, one of the patients came with congestive cardiac failure. In that case, we resuscitated the person and referred the patient to Saudi hospital. Otherwise, most of the patients were actually dealt with inside our mobile facilities. So far so good, it’s really working for us but not without its own challenges.

“In each of the field offices that we have so far, in the last two days, there is a minimum of 300 patients a day. We are still collating the statistics. By the end of tomorrow, we should be able to put our statistics together to actually show how many patients we have seen, the number of females and the disease pattern, the challenges observed and therefore proffer solution for future Hajj operations insha Allah,” he said. Most of the complaints from the patients, he said, included body pain as a result of long distance trek as well as infections induced cough, catarrh, and very few cases of severe chest infections.

“Those are the major complaints. We treat them and they go,” he added. Meanwhile, National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has so far transported 2,737 people back to Nigeria out of some 45,450 Nigerians, who performed hajj in Saudi Arabia this year.

Four hundred and twenty-eight pilgrims from Lagos State and four from Oyo State departed Jedda on Tuesday aboard a Flynas Airways flight back to Nigeria. The flight brings the number of flights that have departed the holy land to six, the command and control centre of NAHCON announced in a statement in Makkah, Saudi Arabia on Tuesday. Speaking on the condition of anonymity, an officer of NAHCON, told the News Agency of Nigeria: “Nobody can say for now when the return flights will end. However, we are looking at mid-September for the completion of the exercise.”

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Hajj 2019: Airlift of 65,000 Nigeria’s pilgrims begins

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Hajj 2019: Airlift of 65,000 Nigeria’s pilgrims begins
  • 2.5m pilgrims performed 2019 Hajj – Report

 

MAGNIFICENCE

Nearly 2.5 million people fill a site the equivalent of 80 football pitches through the pilgrimage

 

 

The airlift of about 65,000 pilgrims from Nigeria has been slated to begin this weekend in about 93 flights from major airports including the King Abdul Aziz International Airport, Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This came as Hajj authorities in Saudi Arabia face the daunting task of cleaning up after 2.5 million people as the holy pilgrimage comes to an end.

Rubbish bins and the streets around Islam’s holiest sites overflow with empty plastic bottles and other trash during the short Hajj season. The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), which announced the commencement of flights noted that the operations will follow the model adopted during flight from Nigeria to Saudi Arabia.

The 2019 Hajj outbound airlift of Nigerian pilgrims to Saudi Arabia spanned 93 flights that, according to NAHCON, conveyed 44, 450 pilgrims from State Pilgrims’ Welfare Boards/Commissions and Agencies. The last Flynas aircraft that departed Abuja on the morning of 6th August transported 301 pilgrims left behind from various states of the federation. Meanwhile, the Hajj authorities in Saudi Arabia believe that most of the empty plastic bottles and other trash mess are caused by undocumented pilgrims – those without official permits.

A report by ARAN News quoted those living and working in Makkah to have aid that some people manage to slip through the pilgrim paperwork checkpoints set up by authorities. “The undocumented pilgrims are usually without bookings or places to stay, instead setting up camp on sidewalks or secret locations.

But there is also the issue of density,” the report read. All areas in Makkah are cleaned before the pilgrims’ arrival, during the Hajj itself and once more after the pilgrims have left. (SPA) All the holy Hajj sites are closely located to each other and the whole area covers eight kilometers square, or around 80 football fields. Maintaining cleanliness among a population of millions on the move becomes a huge feat.

Saudi Arabia spends more than SR2 billion ($530 million) on maintaining the holy sites of Makkah, making it the Kingdom’s largest environmental maintenance program. “The city of Makkah is not big, but the work that goes into it is massive,” Abdullah Al-Sibai, president of the Institute for Hajj and Umrah Research, told Arab News.

Mahmoud Al-Saati, general manager of hygiene at the Holy Makkah Municipality, said there were three cleaning phases that took place in the holy sites. All areas are cleaned before the pilgrims’ arrival, during the Hajj itself and once more after the pilgrims have left.

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