The first batch of 284 haj pilgrims will leave for the Holy Land early Sunday (May 21) on a Malaysia Airlines flight.
Malaysia Airlines flight MH8056 from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) to Madinah will depart at 2.05 am and is expected to arrive at Prince Mohammad Bin Abdulaziz International Airport at 5.50 am local time.
The departure ceremony of the first group of pilgrims was attended by the Tabung Haji (TH) group managing director and chief executive officer Syed Hamadah Syed Othman and TH Haj executive director and head of the Malaysian haj group Datuk Seri Syed Saleh Syed Abdul Rahman.
Syed Hamadah said a total of 31,600 pilgrims, who are the country's official full quota, will depart for the Holy Land to fulfill the fifth pillar of Islam.
"Alhamdulillah, this year's haj operation has returned to the way it was before the COVID-19 pandemic. Insya-Allah, TH is ready to facilitate all the local haj pilgrims with the cooperation of haj officials including staff from other agencies to ensure their journey runs smoothly," he said.
Wukuf day (9 Zulhijah) is expected to fall on Tuesday, June 27.
The last return flight will be on Aug 1.
A total of 98 special chartered flights involving Malaysia Airlines and Saudia Airlines would be used, compared to only 48 flights last year.
Eight departure stations will be used for pilgrims throughout Malaysia for self-reporting, namely Kota Bharu, Kelantan; Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu; Alor Setar, Kedah; Bayan Lepas, Penang; Senai, Johor; Kuching, Sarawak; Kota Kinabalu, Sabah and KLIA.
Source: BERNAMA News Agency