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Clergy oppose isolation call after Mecca

Sunday October 14 2012

Muslim pilgrims walking around the Kaaba in the Grand Mosque of the holy city of Mecca during the annual Hajj pilgrimage rituals on November 7, 2011. Photo/AFP

Muslim pilgrims walking around the Kaaba in the Grand Mosque of the holy city of Mecca during the annual Hajj pilgrimage rituals on November 7, 2011.  Photo/FILE/AFP

By NATION REPORTER

The Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims has urged its members to ignore a warning by the Government that they may be isolated when they return from their pilgrimage to Mecca.

Supkem secretary-general Adan Wachu on Sunday said the claims attributed to Director of Medical Services Francis Kimani and carried in the Sunday Nation were “misplaced, ill-advised and unacceptable.”

He said the council had not been involved in any talks with the Government and therefore did not know of any plans to quarantine those who travelled to Saudi Arabia for the religious duty. (READ: Pilgrims may be isolated upon return from Saudi)

Abandon visit plans

On Sunday, it was revealed by the publication that a high-level security meeting had decided to advise those who wanted to visit Mecca to drop their plans and put in isolation Muslims who had travelled to the middle-east nation upon their return.

Sheikh Wachu said Supkem was in charge of the Kenya Hajj Mission and was coordinating the travelling to the holy city.

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“We have been coordinating with the Ministry of Hajj in Saudi Arabia and they have not told us of any health restrictions,” he said.

Meanwhile, Kenya Hajj Mission vice-chairman Hussein Omar said they would sue the Government for its plans to quarantine Muslims returning from Mecca.

He noted that the pilgrims already in Mecca feared being quarantined on their return adding the move may scare away Muslims from fulfilling one of the demands of the five pillars of Islam.