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Religious affairs minister: Malaysian Haj pilgrims return to warm reception at KLIA

Publish date: Tue, 25 Jun 2024, 09:06 AM

SEPANG, June 24 — Some 280 Malaysian Haj pilgrims arrived at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) at around 9.30pm today, signifying the commencement of the second phase of operations for the Haj Season 1445H/2024M to welcome their return home.

They were welcomed by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs) Datuk Mohd Na’im Mokhtar, Tabung Haji (TH) chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Hussain and Syed Hamadah Syed Othman, Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of TH.

The first group, comprising pilgrims from Kedah and Kelantan, departed from the King Abdul Aziz International Airport, Jeddah at 6.40 am (Saudi Arabia time) on Malaysia Airlines’ AMAL flight (MH 8251).

Mohd Na’im, speaking to rreporters after welcoming the pilgrims, said this year’s Haj operation proceeded smoothly and organised with orderliness and success.

“This is despite challenging conditions such as intense heat, but the pilgrims managed to perform their rituals safely, orderly and with high discipline.

“I congratulate and commend TH for once again demonstrating full commitment to delivering high-quality services and efficient management, marked by various improvements to ensure the smoothness and comfort of the pilgrims’ worship,” he said.

Mohd Na’im said TH’s commitment and dedication in managing this year’s Haj operation have been recognised with Saudi Arabia’s Labbaittom Award for highest satisfaction in service for the third consecutive time.

“On behalf of the Malaysian government, I express gratitude to TH, government agencies, corporate bodies, volunteers and all parties who directly and indirectly contributed to the success of this year’s Haj operation. May this charitable deed be blessed by Allah,” he added.

Mohd Na’im said as of today, 18 Malaysian pilgrims, comprising 13 men and five women aged between 37 and 79 years old, died in the Holy Land. Most deaths were due to heart attacks and blood infections.

Of the 18 who died, 10 managed to perform the Wukuf on 9 Zulhijjah, while TH has completed the haj badal arrangements for the remaining eight pilgrims who could not perform Wukuf, without additional costs.

Mohd Na’im said TH and other agencies will conduct a post-mortem to identify areas for improvement for future Haj seasons.

Meanwhile, Syed Hamadah said receiving the Labbaittom Award serves as motivation for TH to continually seek innovation in providing the best services each year.

“TH will strive to provide the best service to Malaysian Haj pilgrims and conduct careful assessments to enhance service quality for future Haj seasons.

“The goals and objectives outlined for this Haj operation have been successfully achieved, including facilitating almost all pilgrims to perform the Wuquf at Arafah on 9 Zulhijjah, aligning with the saying of the Prophet Muhammad SAW that Haj is Arafah,” he said.

A total of 100 special charter flights have been arranged by AMAL by Malaysia Airlines and Saudia Airlines to bring all Haj pilgrims back to Malaysia from June 24, with the last flight scheduled on July 20. — Bernama

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