Group tasks Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Boards over new pilgrims registration guidelines
Posted by Garba Ahmed, Kaduna | 28 December 2016 | 1,719 times
Independent Hajj Reporters, a civil society organisation, has called on State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Boards and agencies to embark on awareness campaign on its newly introduced pilgrims registration guidelines.
National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) and State Muslims Pilgrims Welfare Boards and agencies after appraising the 2016 hajj, introduced new guidelines for intending pilgrims for 2017 hajj.
Uba Mana, NAHCON head of media, in his press release had disclosed that from the 2017 Hajj, intending pilgrims would now be required to produce highly placed citizens who must be Chief Imam of Juma’at Mosque within the pilgrim’s vicinity, court bailiff, traditional ruler or a civil servant not below grade level 12 at the federal or state civil service.
It also said that some of the conditions are basically meant to tackle the menace of drug-trafficking and abscondment during Hajj.
“Intending pilgrims are also required to commence instalmental payments of N250,000 for 2017 Hajj fare from December to April to make up N1,250,000.00 pending when the official fares for the Hajj would be announced.
“While we lauded the new guidelines meant to prevent embarrassment, and creates reliable database for Nigeria pilgrims; we equally called on SMPWBs and NAHCON to commence awareness campaign on the new guidelines so that intending pilgrims can be abreast with the Hajj seat procedural rules,” the statement said.
Independent Hajj Reporters while reacting to the development in a statement issued by Ibrahim Mohammed on Tuesday, said important awareness campaign should not be restricted to electronics, prints and social media.
He said it should be extended to Juma’at mosques, Islamic Schools and other Islamic gatherings. “States pilgrims’ welfare boards should consider this a primary responsibility because the process of sales of hajj seats is anchored on the shoulder of state Pilgrims’ Welfare Boards.”
On the payment of N250,000 deposit by intending pilgrims, the groups urged SMPWBs to apply the principle of first-come first-served to ensure that those who make deposit early eventually secured hajj seat.
“In view of the importance of this policy which serves as pre condition for qualification to be registered as pilgrims; we therefore call for collaborative efforts from hajj media family to broadcast this important information to intending pilgrims in a format that will be comprehended,” he statement added.