News24

Muslims threaten hajj court action

2012-03-16 18:01

Cape Town - Muslim organisations are threatening to take the international relations and co-operation department to court over its "failure" to manage South Africa's Mecca pilgrimage, according to a report on Friday.

The Cape Times reported that the Hajj Watch, The Friends of Hajj Watch and the Muslim Consumer Council said on Thursday it was government's duty to negotiate with Saudi Arabia over the number of local Muslims allowed to complete their pilgrimage.

They argued it was up to government to sign the agreement, even though the SA Hajj and Umrah Council had taken on this role.

Around 9 000 people had applied for Hajj this year, but last year only 3 000 had been allowed to travel, as dictated by the Saudi Hajj ministry.

The ministry recently implemented a system where only 1 000 people per million Muslims in a country would be allowed to go to Saudi Arabia. South Africa has about a million Muslims.

Department spokesperson Clayson Monyela was quoted in the report as saying: "The department has been engaging with all stakeholders on this issue. Now that they have made a public call, all issues and recommendations will be taken into consideration and we will respond."

Comments
  • Shirley - 2012-03-16 18:25

    How very American-just sue everyone for everything!

      Butter - 2012-03-16 19:39

      King Abdullah has made it very clear that a muslim person can only make one journey to Mecca to complete the HAJ.Over the years it has been noticed that the same person is going over again and again .The Saudi govt has monitored the situation and its been found that these people are not just there to perform prayers but and doing business by buying jewellery or exchanged their old ones for new ones taking it back to their home countries and selling it at a profit.The genuine travellers are not getting the chance to go because of these greedy persons who are using the situation as a holiday destination and shopping venture.There is no way that the quota will be increased as security and safety measures has been stepped up to accommodate those numbers that the Saudi got has in place.Accommodation is also a problem if numbers are increased since hotels get fully booked people start sleeping on pavements in and around Medina and unhygenic conditions are clearly visible.

  • Paul - 2012-03-16 18:28

    I am NOT convinced that this is an issue for the Department !? Why should they get involved ??

      zaatheist - 2012-03-16 19:38

      Yeah! Keep religion away from government. Organise it themselves.

  • JasonEye - 2012-03-16 18:47

    So what are you saying? not even the Hajj want people to go to the Hajj? I say let them all go, why not. ;)

      zaakiro - 2012-03-16 19:18

      Because of increasing number over years, the Saudi Hajj ministry had started giving quotas to countries based on logistical reasons. Around 3-5million visit Makkah and surrounding areas, and as one can imagine the needs of safety, accommodation, food and medical etc. While many countries are against these quotas, it shouldn't be seen as the Saudis shrugging of their responsibility by limiting the number of pilgrims. The Saudi Govt with all their faults spend approx $50Million each year to ensure every aspect of the Hajj, also days before and after are to the best of their ability. A few years ago King Abullah (Saudi Arabian King) announced a $40 Billion expansion to the Mosque in Makkah which will increase the capacity to more than 2.5 million worshipers.

  • robbieyahu - 2012-03-16 18:50

    religions in ALL its branches and faces are evil ...

      steve.dupreez - 2012-03-16 19:12

      That is only YOUR opinion.

      zaatheist - 2012-03-16 19:40

      So why is an opinion of lower value than a belief? Belief: (n) 1. The act of accepting as fact a proposition that is not supported by evidence. 2. The refusal to question the acceptance of an unsupported fact despite the presence of controverting evidence. 3. The lack of interest or will in seeking knowledge, evidence or perspectives that would tend to argue against the acceptance of an unsupported proposition. It’s called “faith” because it’s not “truth.”

      TheJaydedKing - 2012-03-17 07:49

      my opinion too

  • steve.dupreez - 2012-03-16 19:13

    Don't understand why Government need to negotiate on behalf of the Muslims. But, then, they always want something for nothing.....

      Demetrius.Syriopoulos - 2012-03-16 19:28

      so, you condemn robbieyahu about his opinion and here you use the blanket statement "they always want something for nothing" how sterotypical and narrow minded

      Aqeel Ronald Meyer - 2012-03-16 22:05

      muslim people prepare their whole life to be able to go for hajj. You say they want everything for nothing, yet they pay over R50 000 per person to make this religious journey. What do you do in the name of your religion?\r\nIf you as a Christian was in the situation of having to make a pilgramage to Jerusalem and only few people were allowed to go in a year,u would also like the government to negotiate for more people to go for the religious journey. So please dont make crap remarks

  • Demetrius.Syriopoulos - 2012-03-16 19:32

    we keep saying the wolrd has gone mad, but we so ahead of the race in country as well. government must uninvolve themselves from all religions the only involvemt they need to have is to protect the people that go to the places of worship from the criminal element.

  • phathuchicos - 2012-03-16 20:39

    How ironic...we are not even an islamic dominated state yet they want our government to negotiate their religious trips while there are burning issues here at home. I just hope they dont become boko-haram about this.

  • Cracker - 2012-03-17 00:08

    Your religion is yours. Don't try to burden others with it. Others did nothing wrong to deserve it. But why not rely on the prayers of your particular religion to sort the problems out? Not enough faith or not enough earthly power on the part of the deity involved?

  • Erich - 2012-03-17 08:10

    What arrogance. Why should a State Department be held responsible for the number of SA Muslims that should be allowed to travel to Mecca. This is purely a religious matter and should be solved by the interested party.

  • frank.reidrobertson - 2012-03-17 08:59

    Why must our tax money be wasted on this issue. The government has nothing to do with islam??

  • LanfearM - 2012-07-11 13:47

    The government should not be involved in ANY religion at all, and certainly not in negotiating with Saudi Arabia about hajj numbers allowed. The SA Hajj and Umrah Council should be the ones to do this. It doesn't concern government at all. It is a religious matter and not a governing or even international relations one.

  • charmaine.mcdonald2 - 2012-07-11 19:47

    But they are not all really believers! They just claim that they are muslims and do not know the meaning of the word. Many of them are liars and cheats here in S.A. Just ask them how many wives they must have and they will say: Our husbands and sons can have 5 wives to 10 wives. Always these So Called muslims want everything their way. They claim superiority over the entire human race.

      johnny.williams.5682944 - 2012-09-18 23:00

      I just had a closer look at your facebook image - and as much as you could claim that you are human - I swear you look like a f***** up ghost of a zombie of a mutated half pig half mule. But hey that's my discriminatory and unfair opinion - based on the fact that I think I know too much - much like yourself. The difference is - your photo is proof enough, whereas your comment (or statement to be more honest) has absolutely no proof or evidence to back your ignorant claims.

  • charmaine.mcdonald2 - 2012-07-11 19:51

    Laughable, so many reasonable comments on this topic

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