- POSTED: 29 Sep 2013 15:29
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More Singapore Muslims will be able to perform their pilgrimage or haj in Mecca this year after Saudi Arabia reinstated the number of haj places for Singapore from 544 to 680.
SINGAPORE: More Singapore Muslims will be able to perform their pilgrimage or haj in Mecca this year after Saudi Arabia reinstated the number of haj places for Singapore from 544 to 680.
Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Dr Yaacob Ibrahim announced this on the sidelines of a community event on Sunday morning.
He said that Singapore was informed of the additional quota on September 24.
Dr Yaacob said: "We got the news last Tuesday and we have been working behind the scenes together with MUIS and the agents to ascertain whether or not we have enough capacity to take the additional 136.
"I'm glad to announce that the capacity is there. In fact, we have been working very hard to call all the 136 in the queue and all of them have accepted it."
Dr Yaacob said he would continue to appeal to raise Singapore's official quota from 680 to 800 in view of the growing Muslim population in Singapore.
Saudi Arabia had reduced the number of places for pilgrims from abroad to make way for expansion works in Mecca.
It was understood that Saudi Arabia has reinstated the number of haj places for countries which received 1,000 visas or fewer.