The South African Hajj & Umrah Council (SAHUC) says it will be meeting with the International Relations Department to discuss this year’s forthcoming Hajj season which is just a few weeks away.
SAHUC says they are in constant contact with the Saudi Arabian Hajj Ministry and Saudi embassy in South Africa and to date, have received no information if Hajj 1441/2020 will go ahead or not.
In April, Saudi Arabia’s Hajj Minister Dr. Muhammad Saleh Benten urged Muslims from all countries to wait until there is more clarity about COVID-19 before confirming Hajj contracts for 2020.
As the annual Hajj draws closer, it’s emerged Saudi Arabia’s Hajj and Umrah Ministry is expected to make that decision soon about whether the Kingdom will be proceeding with this year’s Hajj or not due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
SAHUC President Shaheen Essop says they are waiting for Saudi Arabia for an update on the status of Hajj.
“We’re getting worried because by and large the first pilgrims were supposed to have departed from South Africa to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia around about the 21st/22nd of June.”
Essop says even if Saudi Arabia allows for Hajj to go ahead, Hujjaj cannot depart the country if South Africa does not open its borders.
“I don’t think that special dispensation or special process is going to be given pilgrims at this point.”
He says while SAHUC accredited operators have all indicated that they will issue a full refund to hujjaj in the event of the cancellation of Hajj by Saudi Arabia, there is yet to be clarification on refunds from airlines.
Essop also says that any hujjaj that intends deferring to perform Hajj at a later date can contact SAHUC, emphasizing that all accreditation fees that have been paid will be refunded in full.
An official source at the Saudi Arabia Ministry of Interior announced on Sunday the…