More facts have emerged on the death of a pilgrim from Niger State and six others in Makkah and Medina, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Medical Team Leader for National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), Dr. Ibrahim Kana, who gave a graphical detail of the incident that led to the death of the pilgrim from Niger state, maintained that the pilgrim was killed in an elevator accident on Wednesday after he mistakenly fell into the pit of an elevator under repairs. This death brings to seven, the number of Nigerian pilgrims that have died since the arrival of the first batch on July 21.
The deceased, he said, stepped into the elevator without knowing it was under repairs and immediately sank inside the pit. Stating that the rescue workers were immediately mobilised to the site by the National Medical Team of NAHCON, Dr. Ibrahim Kana maintained that the CCTV footage of the incident was being reviewed to get full details.
The health centers in Mina had earlier said that it received and treated as many as 9,755 pilgrims during the Hajj rites. The ministry also said more than 900,000 irregular pilgrims were returned from the various entry points to Makkah and the holy sites in addition to 253,000 vehicles. On the other hand, the Ministry of Health said it established 16 health centers in the Jamarat area to provide health care to the stone throwers. The ministry added that it employed about 30,000 medical cadres consisting of doctors, pharmacists, nurses, technicians and administrators.
They worked in about 25 hospitals in Makkah and the holy sites. The ministry also has 135 mobile and permanent health centers, which, together with the hospitals, have a combined capacity of 5,000 beds. Meanwhile, the General Authority for Statistics (GaStat), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has said that a total 2,371,675 comprising 1,327,127 males and 1,044,548 females performed this year’s pilgrimage. 55, 000 of these pilgrims came from Nigeria. The GaStat also said that a total of 47,960,096 pilgrims performed Hajj in 22 years.
Breakdown of the statistics from 1995 (1416H) to 2016 (1437H) shows that 16,027,649 Muslims males and females performed hajj from inside the Kingdom, 31,932,447 from outside the Kingdom bringing the total to 47,960,096 for 22 years.
The 2017 statistics that gave the 2,352,122 total only stated that 1.33 million males and 1.02 million females performed the hajj. The total for the 24 years of 1995 (1416AH) to 2018 (1439AH) stood at 52,683,893 male and female pilgrims. The difference between the last two years shows that there was an increase of 19,553 pilgrims in 2018 above the number of 2017 pilgrims. Nigeria’s allocation was 92,000 until in 2013 when it was reduced to 76,000 before it was restored and increased to 95,000.
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