The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has said Nigerian pilgrims will not be routed through Sudanese airspace due to the ongoing civil conflict in that country.

Malam Jalal Ahmad Arabi, the Chairman of NAHCON, disclosed this yesterday during an interview on Freedom Radio, Kaduna.

Arabi explained that the decision to avoid the Sudan route was primarily based on safety concerns.

He assured that the three contracted air carriers for the pilgrimage operations, namely MaxAir, Peace Air, and Flynas, were fully equipped and prepared for the task.

Last year, the civil unrest in Sudan disrupted the usual pilgrimage route for Nigerians, resulting in increased flight costs.

Arabi said the inaugural flight carrying the first batch of Nigerian pilgrims from Kebbi State to the holy land in Saudi Arabia is scheduled for May 15th at the Sir Ahmadu Bello International Airport in Birnin Kebbi.

He said about 90 per cent of Nigerian pilgrims are expected to be airlifted to Madinah, with the remaining 10 per cent serving as a contingency plan for any unforeseen circumstances.