The Chairman of the Osun State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board, Olawale Isola, has advised intending pilgrims for the 2024 Hajj exercise to ensure that they complete their payment by Monday, February 12 so that they can be included in this year's pilgrimage.
The pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia, known as Hajj, is a mandatory journey that every adult Muslim must undertake at least once in his or her lifetime in Islam. It is one of the Five Pillars of Islam, which is considered the fifth fundamental Muslim practice and institution.
On the 7th day of Dhū al-Ḥijjah (the last month of the Islamic year), the pilgrimage rite commences and concludes on the 12th day.
Isola spoke on Saturday at the State Government Secretariat, Osogbo, Osun State, during a meeting held with the intending pilgrims.
The chairman, who mentioned that the board had received approximately 1,350 passports from the intending pilgrims, encouraged other individuals who may be interested in participating in the Hajj exercise to make their payment before the deadline.
Speaking further, Isola, who is also the Deputy Imam of Osogbo Central Mosque, emphasized that the Hajj operation necessitates sacrifices, steadfastness, and perseverance in order to have a fulfilling pilgrimage. He added that intending pilgrims must set aside worldly matters to ensure a rewarding Hajj operation.
He further added, “But before Arafah make yourself available for all activities, ensure you all read about Hajj activities. And after climbing Mount Arafah, you can go and buy anything. Every other thing that can’t be rewarded by Allah like fighting, or rioting should be suspended for Allah’s sake.
“The total amount of Hajj fare for our Muslim brothers and sisters for the 2024 Hajj operation is N4, 899,000 and we advise and implore them to pay on or before the 12th of this month, even those who have not paid any amount, they can pay before 12th of February and those that are yet to balance up should do so too.
“We need them to submit their international passports as soon as possible and those who are yet to get their passports can come to our office, we will give them a letter in other to fast-track it.”
It was earlier reported that the Lagos State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board has set the final cost for the 2024 Hajj exercise in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia at N4,899,000 and the intending pilgrims had until February 12 to make the payment.
The Assistant Director of the Public Affairs unit of the state board, Taofeek Lawal, pointed out that this was in accordance with an announcement made by the Chairman, National Hajj Commission of Nigeria, Malam Jalal Arabi, over the weekend.