The Chairman/CEO, National Hajj Commission of Nigeria, NAHCON, Alhaji Zikrullah Kunle Hassan is currently flying the Nigerian flag at the 2021 International Hajj Symposium, taking place in Ankara, the capital of Turkey.
The 3-day event, which started on Thursday, is organised by the Presidency of Religious Affairs (Diyanet), under the Chairmanship of His Excellency, Prof. Ali Arbash, the Turkish Minister of Religious Affairs.
Among the NAHCON chairman entourage are the Acting Secretary to the Commission, Alhaji Ahmad Maigari and Special Assistant Technical, Dr. Danbaba Haruna.
Turkish and scholars from Sudan, Kuwait Afghanistan, Germany, Malaysia, Canada and Pakistan are also attending the symposium, where they will be discussing how the sacred pilgrimage held every year in Saudi Arabia has changed amid the coronavirus pandemic, as well as other topics relating to the holy voyage, including women’s health and the economy.
Titled “Hajj In the Context of Changing and Developing Conditions,” the event, Muslim News learnt, comes at a time when hajj will be held in a limited capacity.
In his opening speech, Diyanet head, Ali Erbaş underlined that they want to bring a “new perspective” to hajj and its organisation in light of the new age we are in.
“The symposium will discuss every aspect of hajj, from fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence) dimension to its sociological impact, cultural reflections to health and education. It will shed light on development of hajj organizations since the early days of Islam. It will seek answers to contemporary challenges to organizing hajj. I hope it will also offer a comprehensive response to assess the pilgrimage at the time of pandemic,” he said.
Erbaş noted that it has been one year since the pandemic began and few were able to perform the pilgrimage last year, adding that since February 2020, people from a handful of countries were allowed to perform umrah, the lesser pilgrimage.
“We pray to Allah that this pandemic will be over. Hajj is a symbol of unity for the faithful. There is no other form of prayer that brings together such multitude of people from different races, languages, countries. The pandemic deprived us of this,” he expressed.
Among the topics discussed at the event are the children’s pilgrimage, the time of stoning the devil (a ritual which is part of the pilgrimage), women’s hajj and umrah in the context of privacy, objectives of religious laws on hajj canceled during the epidemic, hajj organization in free market conditions and the history of hajj practices.
Additional information from Daily Sabah
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