Amirul hajj suggests seventy years as age limit for pilgrims
The KWARA State Amirul Hajj for this year's pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia, Professor Suleiman Jamiu has suggested that the Federal Government and the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) should peg the age limit of pilgrims from the country to the holy land to between seventy and seventy five years.
According to him , this would reduce the burden , the executive or members of the various states Muslims pilgrims welfare board face in taken care of the aged pilgrims particularly those of them that were not accompanied by another younger pilgrim.
Professor Jamiu expressed these views in Ilorin , the KWARA State capital while answering questions on a Radio KWARA personality interview programme "Playing Host."
The Amirul Hajj who is a Professor of Islamic Studies in the Kwara State University , Malete, urged those In Charge of the screening of the pilgrims in subsequent hajj operations to ensure that only healthy and abled bodies are cleared to perform the pilgrimage.
According to him, two pilgrims , one FULANI male pilgrim and and another female who hailed from Ogbomosho in Oyo State that travelled from KWARA state died during this year's pilgrimage while a total number of fourteen Nigerian pilgrims died across the country.
He commended NAHCON and the Kwara State Government for providing a conducive environment for pilgrims in Saudi Arabia particularly in the areas of feeding and accommodation and attributed the success recorded to the experience of the executive of the hajj committee under the leadership of the executive secretary of the pilgrims board, Alhaji Tunde Jimoh.
Professor Jamiu called on stakeholders in the hajj operations to ensure that African food are served in future pilgrimages and recalled that most of the foreign food served Nigerian pilgrims were wasted due to the taste of the food.
Similarly , he stressed the need for the Saudi Arabia and Nigerian Governments to work in partnership in the planning of future hajj operations for proper organization and praised the Chairman of the NAHCOH, Barrister Abdullahi Mohammed Muktar for setting up a committee in preparation for next year's pilgrimage.
The Amirul Hajj observed with joy that all pilgrims from the state were airlifted to Saudi Arabia and brought back home on schedule and commended the state government for not sponsoring any politician for the pilgrimage this year as he alleged that some politicians sponsored by government always disrupt hajj exercises .