The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has said that 18 pilgrims from Nigeria lost their lives in just concluded Hajj to Saudi Arabia.
According to NAHCON, the 18 pilgrims came from Kwara, Kogi, Bauchi, Taraba, Niger, Kaduna, FCT.
Ibrahim Kana, who headed NAHCON’s medical team, said two pilgrims, including a 40-year-old woman, died in Madinah.
Three died in Muna, while 13 died in Makkah. A mentally ill woman was amongst the victim.
He however said the 2016 death toll was the lowest in five years. He attributed the low figure to enhanced sanitation, increased medical awareness and compressed national medical team.
The medical team attended to over 21,000 patients since the commencement of the hajj rites, Kana said.
He said despite repeated warnings, the medical team detected five pregnant women.
The Hajj is 95 per cent complete and pilgrims started travelling home on Saturday.
NAHCON Chairman, Abdullahi Mukhtar, said all states who failed to give basic transport allowance to their pilgrims as well as those who collected Adiya money (money for ram slaughtering), and failed to remit same to NAHCON, would be penalised.
He said the commission would reimburse those who paid for but did not enjoy products and services like air conditioned tents, among others.