Apparently saddened by the calamity which occurred in Mina, Saudi Arabia on Thursday killing over 700 people including some Nigerians, President Muhammadu Buhari has called on the authorities concerned to identify and correct lapses in the organization of Hajj exercise.
According to a statement signed by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, President Buhari expressed belief that the stampede at Mina in which a notable Nigerian Journalist, Hajiya Bilkisu Yusuf, Prof. Tijjani El-Miskin and others lost their lives is a monumental tragedy, not only for citizens of the countries involved, but for the global Islamic community.
“The President extends sincerest condolences to the families of the pilgrims who lost their lives in this latest disaster in the Holy Places which occurred less than two weeks after a crane collapse in Mecca which claimed more than a hundred lives.
President Buhari commiserates with the Nigerian Guild of Editors and the Nigerian Union of Journalists on the sad loss of Hajiya Bilkisu, an exemplary, dedicated, knowledgeable, very credible, highly-respected, outstanding editor and columnist who, even in death, will remain a glittering role model for journalists, within and outside Nigeria,” the statement read in part.
The President has according to the statement, taken note of the assurance by the Government of Saudi Arabia that Thursday’s catastrophe will be investigated.
He therefore urged King Salman to ensure a comprehensive and thorough exercise that will identify any flaws in Hajj organisation with a view to avoiding a recurrence of such tragedies during the annual pilgrimage.
The statement continued: “In the knowledge that it is not within our powers to question the will of God, President Buhari prays that Almighty Allah will comfort the families who lost their beloved ones in the stampede and receive the souls of all those who died in the Holy Land while fulfilling the religious obligation of the Hajj.”

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