The Federal Government of Nigeria has officially granted approval to three airlines to serve as exclusive carriers to airlift intending pilgrims for the 2024 Hajj operations.
They are Air Peace Ltd., FlyNas and Max Air.
The government also approved three air cargo companies that will airfreight pilgrims’ excess luggage. They are Cargo Zeal Technologies Ltd, Nahco Aviance and Qualla Investment Limited.
A statement today, January 5, by the spokesperson of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), Fatima Sanda Usara said that the approval reinforced Government’s commitment to ensuring a seamless and secure pilgrimage experience for Nigerian intending pilgrims.
“Consequently, the Federal government concurrently approved allocation of pilgrims from various states to each of the approved airlines as follows:
i.Air Peace is to transport intending pilgrims from: Abia, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Edo, Ekiti, Enugu, FCT, Imo, Kwara, Ondo and Rivers.
ii.FlyNas will airlift Muslim pilgrims from: Borno, Lagos, Osun, Ogun,Niger, Sokoto, Kebbi, Yobe and Zamfara.
iii. Max Air with the highest allocation will be responsible for moving pilgrims from: Bauchi, Benue, Kano, Katsina, Kogi, Nasarawa, Adamawa, Oyo, Taraba, Kaduna, Armed Forces, Gombe, Jigawa and Plateau States.”
The statement said that the allocation of pilgrims to the airlines is in line with the subsisting Bilateral Air Service Agreement (BASA) between Nigeria and Saudi Arabia on airlift of pilgrims under government quota. “However, state governments may choose to designate any of the approved freight companies to convey their pilgrims’ excess luggage. Should any state enter such exclusive arrangement, the decision should be communicated to the Commission accordingly.”
This came as the Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Yusuf Maitama Tuggar, set to lead a delegation from NAHCON to partake in the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the 2024 Hajj operations on 7th January 2024.
Meanwhile, the NAHCON chairman, Malam Jalal Arabi has congratulated airlines on their selection and called on them to gear up to facilitating smooth pilgrimage in 2024 season.
He said that NAHCON would continue to be dedicated to upholding the highest standards in pilgrimage organization, with a focus on the safety and satisfaction of pilgrims.