Some female pilgrims from Ghana who went to Saudi Arabia for pilgrimage have been sent back home. This was revealed in a statement released by the Pilgrims Affairs Office of Ghana (PAOG).
The pilgrims repatriated numbered 39; they comprised 9 minors and 30 others, categorized as embarking on the pilgrimage without a guardian, as they are below the age of 40 years.
See Also: 500 Hajj Pilgrims Flown to Mecca
According to reports, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia requires that ladies below the age of 40 should embark on the pilgrimage with a male guardian, preferably the father, brother or husband. It is said that the Thirty-nine reportedly did not meet the requirements, though the stakeholders involved in the process are trying to rectify the situation.
It was revealed in the statement that the Saudi Ambassador to Ghana, Saeed Sinare, is working with the Chairman of PAOG, Abdul Rauf Tanko Ibrahim, and Immigration Officers to help rectify the situation as soon as possible.
According to the Communication Director of the Hajj Board Mohammed Amin Lamptey, the board will also find ways to forestall this development, for the purpose of those who are yet to be flown.
The Hajj Committee is also hoping that this recent development does not alter their plans, as they had earlier promised that this year’s pilgrimage would be less stressful, for Ghanaian pilgrims.
The Hajj committee had earlier revealed that Ghana’s Hajj pilgrims for this year are up to 5000. The committee flew the first batch of 500 pilgrims, from the Tamale airport to Jedda, Saudi Arabia on August 19, 2016, for this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. The Muslim Hajj pilgrimage for this year will start on September 9, and end on 14 of the same month.
Saudi Arabia seems to be making its rules and regulations for Hajj more strict to ensure the safety of pilgrims who come from all over the world for the holy pilgrimage. But even though the rules are for safety reasons, they just became another hurdle for young intending pilgrims to cross on their journey to a holier life.