Independent Hajj Reporters, a civil society organisation that monitors and reports hajj/Umrah activities has constituted a five-man committee that will monitor the process of executing Hadaya (animal sacrifice) on behalf of Nigerian pilgrims during 2019 hajj.
This was contained in a statement jointly signed by its national coordinator, Ibrahim Muhammed and publicity secretary, Abubakar Mahmoud.
It will be recalled that the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), had in 2016 appointed Jaiz Bank as the sole collector of Hadaya payment on behalf of Nigeria. According to the agreement, Jaiz bank will remit the collection to the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to carry out the rites. IDB is the only bank authorized to undertake the exercise for all pilgrims.
“In compliance with the transparency policy of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, NAHCON and State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare boards has presented the breakdown of 2019 hajj fare to the public recently.
The breakdown contained details of how the fair for 2019, roughly around N1.5 million was arrived at,” the statement said.
However, the civil society said because Hadaya is optional in hajj rites, detailed process of this item currently being executed mostly by states Muslim pilgrims welfare boards were missing in the 2019 hajj template.
Given the above, IHR has wrote to some selected states Muslim pilgrims welfare boards demanding detailed records of pilgrims who paid for hadaya in this year’s hajj.
During 2017 Hajj, all Nigerian pilgrims were asked to pay the sum of N38,000:00.
NAHCON in a statement by it’s Head of Media directed state pilgrims’ boards to collect Hadaya and remit same to a designated account in Jaiz Bank.
”Every pilgrim embarking on the 2017 Hajj will pay the sum of N38,000.00 (Thirty-Eight Thousand Naira only) as price for the sacrificial animal (Hadaya). The state pilgrims’ welfare boards, commissions and agencies are to collect the sums and remit same to the designated accounts of Jaiz Bank Plc which is the appointed bank for the collection of the amounts for the holy rite of Hajj.
However, IHR observed that while Nigerian pilgrims paid N38,000:00, the official price posted on the website of the Saudi Project for the utilization of Hajj meat managed by Islamic Development Bank was SR450 (US$ 120), which is equivalent to N49,500 based on N110 to a riyal exchange rate by then… (www.adahi.org)
A statement released on 20th August 2017 said, “The Saudi Project for the Utilization of Hajj Meat (Adahi), managed by the Islamic Development Bank, has announced that the price of Adahi coupon for 1438 (2017) has been fixed at 450 Saudi Riyals (US$ 120 or Euro 92). The President of the IDB, Dr Bandar Hajjar, who is also the Head Adahi Project, made the announcement today during a meeting with officials in charge of Hajj affairs at embassies and consulates in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
NAHCON recently met with Jaiz Bank officials to review the process of Hadaya collection to block loopholes being exploited by racketeers.
A statement signed by the commissions’ head of
public affairs unit, Fatima Sanda Usara after the meeting said “intending pilgrims are cautioned against committing their Hadaya charges to any individual apart from Jaiz Bank.
“They are to deposit the fees with any JBN branch closest to them and they should be issued with a receipt confirming payment made. Alternatively, any committee set up by state pilgrim’s welfare boards to collect the said amount, due to the absence of JBN in the area, must remit the collected funds into JBN, the authorized representatives of Islamic Development Bank in Nigeria and thereafter distribute receipts to the clients.”
In addition to the above measure, IHR has constituted a committee to ensure that states Muslim pilgrims boards that collect Hadaya (animal sacrifice ) money from pilgrims are duly remitted to Jaiz bank or the hadaya executed transparently.