Stakeholders in hajj and umrah services have urged the Saudi Arabia Government and the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) to proactively address the fears and concerns of the international community and Nigerian Muslims on the coming 2019 hajj exercise for its success.
They gave the advice yesterday in Abuja at the 26th National, states, local governments and other Hajj stakeholders’ conference themed: “2018 Hajj Operations in Nigeria–Matters Arising” organised by ITEC Consultancy Services.
Speaking on, “The Impact of New Hajj Policies and Socio-Economic Challenges on Hajj Performance: The Case of 2018 Hajj Operation in Nigeria”, the Director, Baynakum Family Counseling Centre, Abuja, Dr. Abdulfattah Adeyemi, said “Following the low turnout of the intending pilgrims, the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) extended the deadline (from the first deadline of March 31, 2018) to the end of April, 2018. Despite the aggressive sensitization programmes that were conducted by the commission over the 2018 Hajj, not up to one third of the Hajj slots were eventually paid for before the first deadline.”
He also urged the Saudi Arabia government to address the growing fear of the Muslim World especially the ‘first timers intending pilgrims’ who hear more of concern about the Kingdom in international diplomatic relation with other countries of the world and also the domestic administration policies.
The Director of ITEC Mallam Abdulwakeel Ademola Abdulwahab, who commended NAHCON and other stakeholders for the successes of the hajj 2018, said there were improvements in hajj operation this year, including the airlifting of both in and out bounds being prompt and smooth.