hajjJustice Abdulkadir Jega, a Judge of the Court of Appeal and younger brother to the immediate past Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Professor Attahiru Jega, was among the more than 2000 pilgrims that were killed in a stampede in Mina, Saudi Arabia.
The judge’s body was reportedly found among others at a morgue in Mina, where corpses of those that died were deposited.
The Appeal Court judge was a member of Kebbi State Government delegation to the 2015 Hajj in Saudi Arabia.
The discovery confirms the initial report that more than three Nigerian pilgrims that were feared dead may have suffered fatality even as many state pilgrims are still searching for missing ones while hoping that they are only injured and receiving treatment in the hospital.
As at Thursday when news of the stampede broke only three Nigerians including Prof Tijjani el Miskin and Hajiya Bilkisu Yusuf and another unnamed pilgrims were reportedly killed in the stampede.
Subsequently, other Nigerians victims were also named. Only yesterday, the Taraba State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board confirmed the death of the state’s Amirul Hajj for the 2015 pilgrimage, Alhaji Abbas Ibrahim, the First Class ruler of Zing.
The chairman of the board, Alhaji Hamman-Adama Tukur, explained that the emir died on Thursday during a stampede that claimed the lives of more than 700 pilgrims.
The victims, among others, were at the site of the Jamrat, where they were to fulfill one of the Hajj rites of a symbolic stoning of the devil.
Tukur said the body of the late traditional ruler had been recovered and buried in Makkah on Friday.
Also, the Zing Traditional Council, according the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, has also confirmed that the Emir died along with two of his four wives during the stampede.
The Tafidan Zing, Gurama Bawa, who confirmed the death of the wives in an interview with NAN, said the late emir was aged 62 and had been on the throne for 19 years. He left behind, two wives and 13 children.
Meanwhile, Former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar has expressed regret on the death of more than 747 Muslims on September 17 in a stampede during pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.
A statement issued in Abuja by the Head of Media to Atiku, Mr. Pul Ibe, described the incident as one of the grievous accidents to have befallen Muslims in recent memories.
According to the statement, Atiku notes that such colossal loss of human lives is rare and remarkably regrettable.
It urged the Muslim world to be united in grief and offer prayers to God to avert the recurrence of such accident in future.
“Life is so precious that whoever dies, the world should be united in grief because we are bound by our common humanity.
“The late Hajiya Bilkisu Yusuf, one of the Nigerian victims, was a shining light of the journalism profession in Nigeria,” it said.

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