Hajj stampede: 21 Ghanaians missing; 13 dead

Officials have confirmed that 13 Ghanaians have died so far during the pilgrimage in Mecca.

Out of the dead, eight died of natural causes while five lost their lives in the fatal stampede which killed over 700 people in Mecca.

Ghana’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia Alhaji Said Sinare said 21 Ghanaians “are still unaccounted for” and his outfit is working around the clock to track their whereabouts.

Speaking to Accra-based Citi FM on the current affairs programme Eyewitness News, Thursday, ambassador Sinare said majority of those who passed away were the elderly and advised that “such people must always try and have young ones who can take care of them” at the pilgrimage.

According to Saudi officials, 769 people died in the crush in Mina, near Mecca, and 934 were injured.

The Saudis have been criticised over their handling of security and for the slow publication of casualty figures.

Saudi authorities have not released a breakdown of victims by nationality, but a tally of the numbers of dead released by individual countries adds up to more than the official figure.