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22 Nigerians died during 2013 Hajj - Commission

20 November 2013, 10:33

Ibadan - Twenty two Nigerians died during this year’s holy pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

Uba Mana, the head of Information, National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), disclosed this on Tuesday in a telephone interview with our correspondent.

Mana, who did not give the state by state break down of the figure, said that majority of the victims, died of natural causes, and had been buried in Saudi Arabia in accordance with Islamic rites.

He said the death toll was lower than that of the previous years, due to adequate medical arrangement provided by the commission.

Mana also attributed the low casualty rate to the awareness created by the Commission on personal hygiene and the performance of a stress-free hajj.

NAN reports that 44 pilgrims died in 2011 and 36 pilgrims in 2012 out of the over 95 000 pilgrims who performed the hajj in each of the years.

Speaking on the transportation of pilgrims back home, Mana said the commission was able to complete the exercise four days ahead of the November 19 deadline given to it by the Saudi Arabia authorities.

Mana commended the conduct of pilgrims throughout the exercise, saying that there was no reported case of misbehaviour on the part of any Nigerian, capable of tarnishing the good image of the country.

NAN recalls that the remaining pilgrims and officials came back with the last flight on Friday November 15, concluding the return journey, which began on October 19.

The inaugural flight to Saudi Arabia, which took off from Maiduguri on Saturday, September 14, was concluded on October 9. 

-  NAN


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