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Lagos begins airlift of 2,226 pilgrims to Saudi Arabia


[FILE] Nigerian pilgrims boarding a MaxAir aircraft to Saudi Arabia for Hajj.

Lagos State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board has begun the airlift of 2,226 pilgrims participating in this year’s hajj, as the first batch consisting of about 420 people left Muritala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja for Madinah on Wednesday night.

The Amirul-ul-Hajj, Lagos State, Abdulateef AbdulLateef AbdulHakeem bidding the pilgrims farewell during the inaugural flight disclosed that the pilgrims comprises 248 female and 72 male drawn from Agege Local Government (120); Ajeromi-Ifelodun (119); Alimosho (119); Amuwo-Odofin (18) while 18 came from the board.

He said that the 420 pilgrims were the first batch of a total of 2,266 intending pilgrims travelling with the Lagos State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

While expressing his immeasurable joy that pilgrims from Lagos State were the first to be airlifted among the states in the South West, he stated that the flight, which departed the airport at some minutes past 11.00 pm was going straight to Madinah.

This according to him would save the pilgrims the stress of travelling by road from Jedda to Madinah. The Amir-ul-Hajj added that Lagos pilgrims would be airlifted back-to-back from Wednesday 10th till July 16 when the exercise is expected to be concluded.

Also, the Chairman Ad-hoc committee for the 2019 Hajj operation, Alhaji Ahmed Jebe, commended the board for the success recorded with the inaugural flight. He assured that the welfare of the pilgrims while in Saudi Arabia especially in the area of accommodation, feeding and health provisions would be paramount to the committee.

The pilgrims departed the airport with Airbus A330 operated by flynas and landed safely in Madinah on Thursday at 7.00 am Saudi Arabian time.

Also present at the Airport to bid the pilgrims farewell include members of the Ad-hoc committee; Board Secretary, Mr. Rahman Ishola; South West Commissioner of the National Hajj Commission (NAHCON), Imam Fuad Adeyemi and some staff of the board, among many others.


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