The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), has said that it will set up a panel to investigate the reported abandonment of some intending pilgrims at Aminu Kano International Airport.
There was report Thursday in Nigeria that over 450 intending pilgrims were abandoned at the Aminu Kano International Airport after the private tour agents responsible for their airlift to Saudi Arabia failed to provide the service.
NAHCON Commissioner in charge of Operations, Abdullahi Modibbo Saleh, during a press briefing with journalists Friday night in Mina, said the commission received report of the incident late on Thursday, with only few hours left for Nigerian pilgrims to start moving from Makkah to Mina tent for the commenced fof proper Hajj rites.
He said the pilgrims involved were not state or federal government registered pilgrims, but those of private tour operators.
“A committee will be set up to investigate this matter and anyone found involved will be dealt with according to the law.”
On allegations that the pilgrims were abandoned by Nigerian authorities, Saleh said, “there are two categories of Pilgrims; there are states pilgrims board pilgrims and private tour operators pilgrims. We have 44, 450 registered pilgrims from the states and they have all been airlifted to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia”.
He said Private tour operators carry out their own arrangements for the airlift of their pilgrims for any Hajj exercise.
Asks on fate of the stranded pilgrims, the he said, “NAHCON has commence investigation. to ascertain what went wrong with a view to avoid future occurrences.”