That includes South African hujjaj who have been preparing for their “journey of a lifetime”.
The Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah on Tuesday announced that no international pilgrims will be allowed into the Saudi kingdom to perform hajj this year.
“In light of the risks of Coronavirus spreading in crowded places and large gatherings, its transmission between countries and the increase in average infections globally, it has been decided that only a limited number of pilgrims from various nationalities who already reside in Saudi Arabia, will be able to perform the Hajj,” the ministry said in a statement.
This comes after the local South African Hajj and Umrah Council (SAHUC) announced on 11 June that the hajj has been cancelled this year.
South Africa’s national borders have been closed and international travel suspended.
Pensioner Fatima Solomon from Portlands in Mitchells Plain was accredited for hajj and says SAHUC’s announcement has left her heartbroken.
“I am 70 years old and I only managed to get financial aid at this age. ”
The granny says she hasn’t lost her money and is praying hard that she will be able to go on hajj next year.
“My agent was on top of everything. Informing me of what was happening with regards to my money from as early as April.
“I haven’t lost anything, not even my place on the accredited list for next year.”