First batch of Ghanaian Hajj pilgrims arrives in Madina
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Accra – About 429 Hajj pilgrims flown from Tamale, the capital of the Northern Region of Ghana, have successfully touched down in Madina, Saudi Arabia, on Saturday for the 2023 Hajj.

The contingent is the first batch of some over 2,000 pilgrims expected to be airlifted from Ghana to the Kingdom to perform the hajj ritual, which is the fifth pillar of Islam.

About six flights are expected to carry the pilgrims in the coming days as the Hajj ritual begins on the 8th of Dhul Hijjah till the 13th of Dhul Hijjah on the Hijri calendar and, respectively, June 26 to July 1, 2023 on the Gregorian calendar.

“Alhamdulilah, we are happy to report that the first flight from Tamale arrived safely in Madina, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

The Ambassador of Ghana to Saudi Arabia, Habib Tijani; the Head of Delegation of Ghana’s Hajj Advance Team, “Doctur” Oluman (Osumanu Yunusah); and the Consul General of Ghana’s mission in Jeddah, Kamal-Deen Abdulai, welcomed the pilgrims with sweet, scented roses and dates,” the Pilgrim Affairs Office of Ghana said on its Facebook page.

Alhaji Farouk Hamza, the Executive Secretary of the Ghana Hajj Board, expressed his satisfaction with arrangements so far on Friday.

He visited the Hajj Terminal at the Tamale International Airport to supervise logistical arrangements in place ahead of the first flight to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

He urged pilgrims and their relatives to cooperate with officials to ensure their comfort and safety.

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Meanwhile, the Ghana Hajj Board has also issued a stern warning to Ghanaian pilgrims with tourist or Umra visas who intend to illegally perform Hajj and infiltrate the Hajj camp of Ghana in Saudi Arabia.

In a statement released in April, the board said it would not hesitate to expose such persons since their activities tend to undermine the integrity of Hajj management in the country and cause logistical constraints.

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