Two Appeal Court Judges, Justices Abdulkadir Jega and Musa Hassan Alkali were among those who lost their lives in Mecca, Saudi Arabia during the stampede that left over 700 persons who were on Holy Pilgrimage dead.
While Jega, a relation of former INEC Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega was a presiding Justice of Abuja Division, Justice Musa Hassan Alkali was of the Ilorin Division.
Also confirmed dead in the unfortunate incident is the Amirul Hajj hajj (leader of delegation) of Taraba state and a traditional ruler in the state, the Kpanti Zing, Alhaji Abbas Sambo and some of his family members, including his two wives.
The Kpanti Zing controls a domain that extends deep into Adamawa State. The Kpanti is the supreme ruler of the Mumuye tribe “worldwide” and they form a chunk of the Adamawa population.
Sources in Saudi Arabia told newsmen at the weekend that the Emir and some of his family members had not been seen since Thursday.
A missionary with the Ansar ud-deen society of Nigeria, Lagos branch, Alhaji Raheed Quadri, also died in the stampede.
No official of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria, NAHCON, was however willing to speak with the media on the issue.
There are indications that more than 50 Nigerians may have died in the deadly stampede that occurred during the Jamarat (symbolic stoning of the devil) on the outskirt of Mina for this year’s Hajj exercise.
The overall death figure from the stampede has risen to 769 according to Saudi authorities.
The Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Mahmud Mohammed, in a condolence message expressed heartfelt commiserations to the Court of Appeal and the families of the two Justices.
Justice Mohammed in a condolence message to their families, the Court of Appeal, the Judiciary and indeed the Federal Republic of Nigeria, noted that it was with a deep sense of shock but with gratitude to Almighty Allah that he learnt of the death of Abdulkadir Jega, Presiding Justice of Abuja Division and Justice Musa Hassan Alkali of Ilorin Division
The CJN said the death of the revered jurists is not just a huge loss to the Judiciary, but Nigeria in entirety, adding that both men of the Bench contributed immensely to the development of the country’s jurisprudence.
According to a statement by the media aide to the CJN, Mr. Ahuraka Isah, “the CJN, Justice Mohammed on behalf of the entire Judiciary in the country prayed the Almighty Allah to grant the souls of the departed Justices eternal rest and their families the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.”
Justice Mohammed expressed his personal condolences to the immediate family and relations as well as friends and associates of the highly respected jurists who will be greatly missed by the entire judiciary.

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