The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) Friday said 58,000 visas have been processed for Nigerian pilgrims from the 75,000 allocated to states’ pilgrims’ welfare boards.
A statement by NAHCON’s Deputy Director for Information, Mousa Ubandawaki, said the scheduled airlift of pilgrims has not been affected by the technical glitch encountered during the processing of visas for the pilgrims.
Ubandawaki while reacting to a media report that 45,000 pilgrims might miss the holy pilgrimage due to non-availability of travel visas to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, said it is on course to meet the deadline set by the commission to complete its airlift.
“Truly, there was a technical problem relating to the visa processing, but it has been resolved at the moment; visa processing is ongoing. In the last two days, visas to state pilgrims have been steady, and no flight has been cancelled due to visa issues. Thus far, over 35, 000 Nigerian pilgrims are in the Holy Land, while the remaining pilgrims are expected to be airlifted in the next 10 days,” he said.
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He added that all states that are scheduled to fly are on course without any disruption related to visa procurement.
While expressing the commission’s resolve to airlift all pilgrims to visit Madina before Arafat, he said the need to synchronise the airlift with the available accommodation in the city and avoid overcrowding led to a reduction of ferrying more passengers as would have been expected.