A Ugandan Muslim pilgrim, who had been reported as missing in Saudi Arabia, was discovered three days later receiving medical treatment in a hospital.
Sheikh Yahaya Kalungi, an imam from Mityana district, was part of a group of 400 pilgrims who had traveled to Jeddah on a Uganda Airlines flight for this year’s pilgrimage.
Following his disappearance, extensive efforts were made by the organizers to locate him. They searched various places and communicated through WhatsApp groups, sharing his name and photo, but their attempts were unsuccessful.
Ultimately, on Friday, he was found in a health facility where he had been admitted.
An official circulated an audio message through WhatsApp groups, announcing, “Fellow pilgrims, we have finally located the sheikh who has been missing for three days.”
It was revealed that Kalungi had fallen ill and sought medical attention without informing the group he was traveling with.
He will remain in the hospital until he is given clearance to travel back home.
The discovery of Kalungi, after days of intense searching, brought much-needed relief to his fellow Ugandan pilgrims, especially after the unfortunate death of another compatriot during the pilgrimage.
Musa Kasimba, 88, from Kiteredde in Kayunga town, fell ill and passed away on June 31 in Saudi Arabia. He was admitted to a government clinic in Mecca, the holiest city in Islam, where he was subsequently laid to rest.
Additionally, another Ugandan pilgrim, Hajati Sulaina Nakawesi, went missing on Friday just before the group was scheduled to return to Uganda.
Hajji Yasini Omari Assini, who serves as the LC2 chairman of Muyenga parish in Kampala, is among the returning pilgrims. He reported that 70-year-old Nakawesi disappeared from the group as they were preparing to board a bus to the airport.
Initially, the pilgrims assumed she was praying, but after a prolonged wait and unsuccessful search, they reluctantly proceeded to catch their flight.
CLICK HERE TO FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK
Their departure was scheduled from Madinah Mohammad Bin Abdulaziz International Airport in Medina at 2:10 am, with an expected arrival at Entebbe International Airport at 6:10 am on Saturday.
Another group of pilgrims is expected to arrive at Entebbe on Saturday evening.