NAHCON inspects hajj ritual sites in Makkah

By Fatima Hassan, Makkah

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The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON)  has visited (Masha’er areas)  sites at Muna, Plain of Arafat, and  Musdaliffa where hajj rituals will be performed to ascertain the level of preparedness for the 2024 hajj.

NAHCON Commissioner of Operation,  Anofi  Elegushi, who  led NAHCON staff and officials of the State Pilgrims Welfare Board on the tour said that the reason they came for the inspection is to avoid a repeat of what happened during last year’s hajj

The Commissioner also warned the Nigerian Pilgrims to safeguard their health under the intense sun of Saudi Arabia.

The purpose of our visit is to avoid most of the unfortunate incidents that we experienced last year hajj, and the most important thing is the sensitization of our pilgrims on all the dos and don’ts, especially on the issue of jamrat.

NAHCON Makkah Coordinator, Dr. Aliyu Tanko, called on the pilgrims to follow the laydown rules of Saudi Arabian authority to avoid gridlock and to ease the movement of Pilgrims from Muna, Arafat, and Muzdalifa.

He enjoined the official to obey the Saudi Arabian authority rules by advising their pilgrims to desist from action that may disrupt free flow of vehicular movement during masha’er.

Not following this arrangement caused us a lot during the 2015  hajj where in Nigeria, we lost over 300 hundred pilgrims and over 2000 in the Muslim world because of disobedience because everybody rushed from Musdalifa to Jamrat. But this time around, the authority said we must be responsible and we must safeguard the lives of our pilgrims and the way to do it is through this arrangement to go back to the tent, there are arrangement to lead the pilgrim to the jamrat.

The Head of NAHCON National Medical Team, Dr Abubakar Ismail commended the Saudi Authority for putting facilities that will help in curbing the danger of heatstroke during the core hajj rites.

Having gone to the masha’er, the facilities I have seen were amazing,  I mean Minna and Arafat. The Saudis have tried so much to make Ibada easy at the Mashaer area, the tents are wider and the ACs were working, at every point, you have bus stations everywhere from Makkah to Muna and from Muna to Musdalifa and Jamrat and from all this worship places back to the Muna. We are very happy with the arrangement we have seen so far, Alhamdulillah.

On the issue of this year’s prediction of heatstroke during the hajj rites, Dr Ismail again called on pilgrims to avoid moving under the scorching sun.

He said if it is compulsory for the pilgrims to come out to the sun, then they should protect themselves by taking a lot of fluid and  use umbrellas.

It is deadly, it can move from heat exhaustion to heatstroke at which point the temperature of the body could rise to 40 degrees Celsius which is live threatening and fatal. One could just go into coma and die which we don’t want to happen.

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