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Don’t Disrupt Ongoing Hajj Operations, NAHCON Urges Striking Workers

The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has urged the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) not to impede the ongoing transit of Nigerian pilgrims to Saudi Arabia.

The Assistant Director, Public Affairs, NAHCON, Mrs Fatima Usara, made the call in a statement on Monday in Abuja.

Usara also emphasised the need for the NLC and the TUC to respect the sensitivity of “this divine devotion and not to encroach on its movement.”

“Information reaching NAHCON indicates that there are plans by a section of the NLC to disrupt the ongoing Hajj operations.

“This is coming despite the initial understanding that Hajj flights would not be affected.

“The commission appreciates the concern of the NLC over the welfare of its members, however, NAHCON wants it to respect the sanctity of Hajj as a religious obligation which Muslims do not take lightly.

“The commission advises NLC to apply caution and not to tamper with the Hajj conveyance as a courtesy to the Muslim faith.

“Disruptive action against the smoothness of the operation will deprive intending Muslims of their fundamental right to worship considering the limited time left before the closure of Jeddah and Madinah airports for the pilgrimage,” the statement added.

According to the information retrieved from the agency’s website, 65,500 Nigerians are scheduled to make the pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia in 2024.

The commission has already conveyed 38,805 pilgrims to Saudi Arabia on 92 planes.

On Monday, it was reported that the organised labour shut down all entry points of aviation agencies at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos and the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja to press home their demands for the implementation of a new national minimum wage.

This action affected flight operations at the nation’s busiest airport as airlines and passengers were left stranded at the airport entrances.

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