Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman’s royal order establishing a Royal Commission for Makkah city and Holy Sites welcomed by British Muslims.

This Royal Commission, under the chairmanship of Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, will oversee the development of Makkah and the holy sites to enable millions of pilgrims and visitors perform their rituals with comfort and ease.

The Association of British Hujjaj (Pilgrims) UK, a national Hajj/Umrah-specific charity organization working for the welfare and wellbeing of Hajj/Umrah pilgrims, urges the Royal Commission to review the present Hajj/Umrah service provision structure in detail to achieve its goal of ensuring the wellbeing of millions of pilgrims.

One of the major contributory factors highlighted by past Hajj disasters is the lack of awareness of health and safety information amongst pilgrims. These heart breaking tragedies could have been prevented had pilgrims been equipped with knowledge of lifesaving precautionary measures.

It is highly regrettable that the vast majority of attending pilgrims do not have the appropriate knowledge of the risks involved when they are performing Hajj rituals amongst a crowd of over two million people. Therefore, it is extremely important that the Royal Commission addresses this issue and prepares a strategy to promote a culture of awareness and knowledge amongst prospective pilgrims from around the world. Informed pilgrims will be able to safeguard their own wellbeing and help prevent any future Hajj tragedies. The Kingdom can also save on significant amount of resources which it is currently spending to ensure the safety and welfare of pilgrims.

Another serious issue that needs to be addressed by the Royal Commission is the growing culture of corruption and malpractice promoted by rogue and unscrupulous Hajj service providers. These service providers are indulging in all sorts of malpractices and exploitation, which is causing extreme hardship, trauma, and mental anguish to vulnerable Hajj/Umrah pilgrims from across the globe including the sick, the elderly, and the disabled. The Royal Commission is urged to adopt a zero tolerance policy and carry out anti-corruption crackdowns against these rogue service providers so that Hajj/Umrah pilgrims may perform their religious obligations in peace and harmony.