Hajj 2024: Seven Nigerian pilgrims Arrested In Makka For Not Having Nusuk ID Cards  

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Few days to the commencement of this year’s Hajj in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, seven Nigerian pilgrims have been arrested for not being in possession of their Nusuk ID cards.

This was revealed by the Makkah Coordinator of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), Dr Aliyu Tanko, in a circular he signed and directed at state Muslim pilgrims welfare boards, dated June 6, 2024.

The Nusuk ID card is an innovation by the Saudi authorities based on a fatwa passed by the Kingdom’s highest religious body, making it mandatory for every pilgrim participating in this year’s pilgrimage to obtain a hajj permit for the well-being of all.

This was to prevent a reoccurrence of the scenario that played out during the 2023 Hajj when illegal pilgrims overran the Mina tents and made it difficult for authentic pilgrims, including Nigerians, to get value for money they paid for services.

Dr Tanko informed the state pilgrims boards that the seven Nigerian pilgrims from two different states were arrested in front of their hotels in Makkah between Tuesday and Wednesday this week.

According to the Makkah Coordinator, “NAHCON wishes to reiterate its advisory and appeal on the collection and use of Nusuk ID cards by pilgrims on Hajj in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

“The Commission warns that already, seven Nigerian pilgrims from two states were arrested in front of their hotels on the 5th and 6th of June, for not being in possession of their Nusuk ID cards.”

He added that the advisory becomes important as the Saudi authorities would intensify the arrest of people without their cards as the month of Dhul Hijjah begins soon.

Tanko then implored all state Muslim pilgrims’ welfare boards and tour operator companies to increase awareness among their pilgrims on the mandatory possession of the Nusuk ID cards, stating that the cards must be collected on arrival in Makkah from their Mutawwif officials.

He stated that it was mandatory for pilgrims to carry their Nusuk cards to serve as a means of recognizing them and also to enable them to have access to key areas during the five-day pilgrimage.

“It is imperative to carry these cards at all times as they are the recognised means of identifying pilgrims and also having access to key areas during Hajj.

“Pilgrims with smartphones can download the Nusuk app from Play Store or iTunes stores, use their passport and visa numbers to activate and access digital copies of their Nusuk cards,” Tanko stated.

He, therefore, warned that “Not having Hajj permits, harbouring or aiding those without it attracts SR10,000 fine, 6 months’ imprisonment, deportation and banning from Saudi Arabia for 10 years.”

He, however, appealed to all state pilgrims welfare boards as well as tour operators to make sure that their pilgrims adhere strictly to the guidelines to avoid any inconvenience or disruption in their spiritual journey.



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