As Tents Accommodating Nigerian Pilgrims In Muna, Saudi Arabia, Set To Undergo Major Expansion, Renovation

By Ajape Sefiu A.

A Saudi Arabia based company, Ithraa Alkhair Group, has announced a substantial investment of $200 million to enhance the facilities and provide a more comfortable experience for pilgrims.

According to reports, the tents accommodating Nigerian pilgrims in Muna, Saudi Arabia, will undergo a major expansion and renovation.

Speaking at an event hosted by his company to honour the Nigerian Hajj 2024 delegation in Jeddah on Friday, the Chairman of the group, Ahmed Sindi, said that the move is expected to significantly improve the living conditions of Nigerian pilgrims during the Hajj season.

The Muna tent city, a temporary residence for pilgrims during the Hajj, is a crucial stopover for three days before proceeding to Jamarat for the symbolic stoning of the devil ritual.

However, the overcrowding and inadequate facilities in the tents have been a longstanding concern, drawing the attention of several high-ranking Nigerian dignitaries who participated in this year’s Hajj pilgrimage.

The subpar conditions in the tents have been a subject of concern, prompting calls for improvement and upgrading of the facilities to ensure a more comfortable and safe experience for pilgrims.

“We have already set aside the sum of a billion Saudi Riyals, over $200 million, to improve the facilities in Muna and together with our partners, Kidana, we are talking to see how many of the two-level tents we can deploy,” Mr. Sindi said.

Speaking about the conduct of the Hajj this year, Mr. Sindi said, “as far as we are concerned, we have witnessed and experienced the most successful Hajj in many years so far. Is it the ultimate service? No, but to us, it is the ultimate best effort.”

The Nigerian delegation at the event was led by the Chairman of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), Jalal Arabi.

(NAHCON chairman, Jalal Arabi at an event with members of the Ithraal Khair group in Jedda)
(NAHCON chairman, Jalal Arabi at an event with members of the Ithraal Khair group in Jedda)

The event provides a platform for pilgrims to converge and celebrate the success of the Hajj season.

Niger State Governor, Umar Bago’s Assessment of this year’s Hajj

The renovations development came after Niger State Governor, Umar Bago, publicly expressed his disappointment and frustrations with the deplorable conditions at the Muna camp.

Mr. Bago also advocated for decentralising the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), proposing that state governments take on more responsibility for managing certain aspects of their pilgrims’ experiences.”

Overbooking of Tents at Muna

Recall that 3sixtyislam earlier reported the disappointing experiences shared by Nigerian pilgrims while staying in Muna during this year’s Hajj.

They described the general conditions of the place as unpleasant, adding that they lived like homeless people.

Pilgrims has, however, praised the swift action Ithraa Alkhair took to address the challenging situation in Muna and transform it into a more comfortable and enjoyable living space for future pilgrims.