By Idris Abdulrahman
No fewer than 37,746 Nigerian Muslims have been transported to Saudi Arabia to perform this year’s hajj.
The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) on Friday concluded the transportation of the pilgrims following the movement of 190, the last batch of intending pilgrims.
The last batch flew into Saudi Arabia through a Fly Nass airline from Abuja, which conveyed five pilgrims from Kaduna State, 14 members of medical team and 171 others.
The general transportation was conducted in 101 flights undertaken by Max Air, Fly Nass and Medview Ltd. from various locations in Nigeria, and had targeted 55,000 pilgrims.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Hajj inaugural flight took off with 446 Kogi Pilgrims on July 21 in Abuja, followed by 382 from Nasarawa State.
With the latest, 37,746 Nigerian pilgrims have now joined about 1.6 million pilgrims worldwide performing the Hajj.
The Saudi Government had announced the figure, saying 233,000 of the total were domestic pilgrims now in Makkah, while others were being expected.
Saudi’s General Overseer of Passports, Sulaiman Al-Yahya, said 18 individuals were being prosecuted for illegally transporting pilgrims without permits.
The Nigerian pilgrims are also expected to join others worldwide to perform the Hajj rites on Monday on Arafat Day, and later observe the Eid-El-Kabir on Tuesday. (NAN)