The Saudi Ministry of Hajj has allocated 95,000 seats to Nigeria for the 2024 Hajj, Daily Trust report.
This was announced at a virtual meeting by the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) and the Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah.
The Saudi authorities, in a statement Tuesday, urged Nigeria to conclude all arrangements and negotiation with service providers for catering, accommodation and transportation within the next 120 days.
Dr Badr Mohammed Al- Somi, the leader of the Saudi delegation, asked NAHCON to strive to meet up with the timeline in order to enable the ministry to make adequate plans and avoid the incidents witnessed during the 2023 pilgrimage.
The authorities stated that they want all hajj missions to be proactive in meeting their time frame; “…so that we won’t allow what happened previously and also to give the missions sufficient time to examine the services before pilgrims’ arrival.”
During his remarks, NAHCON boss, Zikrullah Hassan, asked Saudi authorities to expedite action on the refund of the feeding and tent services not provided in the Mashair.
He urged Saudi authorities to disengage from the provision of feeding service in the Masha’ir and allow Nigeria to take over Muna and Arafat services to give pilgrims opportunities to enjoy delicacies they are used to at home.
Alhaji Zikrullah also sought the support and assistance of the ministry in securing the refund paid to the General Authority on Saudi Aviation (GACA) on behalf of the Nigerian carriers in 2019.
“The commission appealed to the Saudi Ministry for the upward review of the number of tour operators/companies to be allowed to conduct hajj from 10 to 100 companies,” he added.