The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) and State Hajj Boards, Commissions and Agencies have taken serious measures to ensure improved services and 100% drug-free, as well as hitch-free 2017 Hajj operations.
The commission and the boards have therefore rolled out stringent conditions that must be accomplished by intending pilgrims to qualify them for the holy journeys to Makkah for the next Hajj exercise. Some of the conditions are basically meant to tackle the menace of drug-trafficking and abscondement during Hajj.
From the 2017 Hajj, intending pilgrims would now be required to produce highly placed citizens who must be chief Imam of Jum’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 service.
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.
These resolutions were reached at the review of 2016 Hajj between NAHCON and the chief executive officers of state Hajj boards recently in Abuja. The meeting also recalled the sad memory of victims of the twin tragedies of 2015 Hajj and condoled the state governors and families of the affected victims. It was noted that compensations for the victims have not been released by the Saudi government, though the Saudi government has assured that it will be released through appropriate channels after all due consultations and arrangements have been concluded.
Other resolutions were the collaboration among the Commission, the National Orientation Agency (NOA) and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) on the move for drug-free hajj in future, accommodating the pilgrims within the radius of one kilometer to Haram in Makkah and the floating of benchmark for Makkah accommodation according to rating.
The Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), Barr. Mukhtar Abdullahi Muhammad MON, used the occasion to thank President Muhammadu Buhar and the National Assembly for their supports and guidance to the commission which culminated to the successful and hitch-free 2016 Hajj exercise.
He also appreciated the state governors for numerous supports to their respective hajj boards which he described as partners in progress in the continuous transformation of hajj management in Nigeria. He advised the leaderships of Hajj boards at the state level against corruption which he noted was a great assignment given to him by Mr. President to fight in Hajj management.
“The success of the last hajj has thrown up a great challenge to the commission which must sustain the tempo but surpass it in future operations. I therefore urge Hajj managers to be sincere in serving the pilgrims, to be accountable and to fear of Allah.
In his contribution, the commissioner in charge of policy, personnel management and finance (PPMF), Alhaji Yusuf Adebayo Ibrahim said refunds would be made to state boards by the commission for any of the services the pilgrims were not given and for those who could not travel for any reason.
Uba Mana
Head of Media
19th December, 2016​