The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria has confirmed that 99 Nigerian pilgrims died, 42 injured and 214 others missing in the September 24 stampede in Mina, Saudi Arabia.
The confirmation came as a road traffic expert, Alhaji Babatunde Adewumi, suggested that NAHCON should engage the services of trained and qualified traffic controllers to help in the management of crowd in subsequent Hajj exercise.
The agency’s Commissioner (Planning, Research, Statistic Information and Library Service), Dr. Saleh Okenwa, gave the clarification in an interview with journalists on Thursday in Makkah, Saudi Arabia.
According to him, the total number of Nigerians affected in the incident was 355 as of the time of filling this report.
Okenwa, however, insisted that those missing could not be declared dead, since identification of those affected were still being collated by the Saudi Arabia health authorities in conjunction with Nigerian and other nations’ health officials.
He also gave the breakdown of the victims as 73 deaths from the state pilgrims welfare boards, agencies and commissions, while the remaining 26 were from the tour operators.