Only 5,500 Ghanaian Muslims would have the opportunity to travel to the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia to perform this year’s Hajj.
The number is a reduction is 900 short of the total of 6,400 people who were airlifted to perform the hajj last year.
The decision to slash the number was taken by the National Hajj Board, Chairman of the Board, Sheik IC Quaye, announced Tuesday at the launch of the 2018 hajj pilgrimage in Accra.
Vice President Alhaji Mahammudu Bawumia at the weekend announced government’s decision not to increase fares for this year’s hajj.
He said despite the increment announced by the Saudi Arabian government, President Akufo-Addo has directed that last year’s fare is maintained.
“… The Saudi Arabian Government we know has increased the fares for the 2018 pilgrimage but President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says I should tell all prospective pilgrims that there will be no increment in fares”, he said at the at the 50th anniversary to mark the celebration of the birth of Prophet Muhammad by the Tijanniya Movement of Ghana in Kumasi.
Meanwhile, the Ghana Hajj Agents Association has welcomed government’s decision to slash the number of pilgrims for this year.
The organisation of hajj in Ghana has always been fraught with challenges, especially before takeoff from Ghana.
Although the country recorded some impressive gains in last year’s hajj, it was not without flight delays.
New immigration policies have also been introduced in the preparatory processes, including the taking of finger prints to check imposters.
By Richard Bright Addo|TV3|3news.com|Ghana