From Fred Ezeh & Susan Obaje, Abuja
Two years after a stampede and crane crash claimed thousands of lives including pilgrims from Nigeria in Saudi Arabia, the National Hajj Commission (NAHCON) said in Abuja, yesterday that it was yet to account for five out of the 317 Nigerian pilgrims involved in the incident.
The commission also said that it was yet to receive financial and other due compensation from the Saudi government particularly for those who died when a crane belonging to a construction company collapsed on the pilgrims.
Chairman of the commission, Abdullahi Muktar, disclosed this when he visited the FCT chapter of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ).
The visit, he said, was to inundate the media with the activities of the commission particularly in its primary mandate of providing a platform for hitch-free hajj exercise for Muslim pilgrims to Mecca.
Represented by the secretary of the commission, Dr. Bello Mohammed, he said it was difficult for medical authorities to match the collated DNA samples to the ones available due to the huge number of the pilgrims involved in the incident.
He said strong lessons were learnt with the tragedy, stressing that the commission planned to establish a bank where extra blood samples and other possible medical identifications could be safely stored for easy access in case of any such similar unexpected incident.