The airlift for the 2017 Hajj will commence on July 24, Chairman of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), Abdullahi Mukhtar Mohammed, announced on Tuesday.
Speaking during an interactive session with the House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs, Mohammed said the Jeddah International Airport would be closed for Hajj operations on August 26. “The airlift will commence on 24 July and the closure of Jeddah Airport is August 26. The return of Nigerian pilgrims will commence on September 6 and the last flight will be on October 8,” he said.
Mohammed said 133 licensed operators have been approved by the commission for the Hajj operations and that accommodation arrangement has been completed, saying Nigerian pilgrims will now pay about $110 less than what they paid last year.
“Nigeria can now compete with any nation of the world in terms of accommodation, particularly in Madina,” he said, adding that out of the 95,000 Hajj slots for Nigeria, 75,000 would go to states, while 20,000 would be allocated to others.
On Hajj fare, Mohammed announced that for the first time, there would not be uniform fare and that it would be determined by states, depending on the services to be rendered due to new arrangements for this year’s Hajj.
The deputy chairman of the committee, Abdullahi Ibrahim (APC, Jigawa), who presided over the session thanked the commission for the details given on the 2017 Hajj operations.
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