The inaugural flight of the 2016 Hajj exercise in Nigeria will take off on August 8 from the Sultan Abubakar Airport in Sokoto state.
This was revealed by the Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar, on Saturday in Abuja at a one day meeting of all bodies involved in the Hajj exercise at the National Mosque Abuja.
The Sultan, who was represented by the Etsu Nupe, Yahaya Abubakar, said the first flight will convey pilgrims from Zamfara state.
The Etsu Nupe called on all intending pilgrims to pray for peaceful coexistence and advised them to “take seriously the recent ban placed on kola nut by the Saudi Arabian authorities”.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of the National Hajj Commission, NAHCON, Abdullahi Mukhtar, said the commission has concluded arrangements to put in place a blood bank for Nigerian pilgrims in Saudi Arabia.
Thousands of pilgrims lost their lives at a stampede in Mina last year, but Mr. Mukhtar said the Saudi authorities has assured that “adequate measures have been taken to avoid a recurrence of the ugly incident”.
The NAHCON boss also said the Saudi authorities have banned the distribution of all enlightenment materials to pilgrims in the Kingdom.
He therefore, announced that ” all enlightenment materials should only be given to Nigerian pilgrims before they depart from the shores of the nation.”
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