The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has secured 542,033 Saudi Riyals (about N107,864,567) from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as refund for the 2022 Hajj.
NAHCON Assistant Director, Information and Publication Division, Mallam Mousa Ubandawaki, stated, yesterday, that the refund was for the poor feeding services rendered by the Company of Mutawwifs for Pilgrims from African Non-Arab countries.
He added: “The development is sequel to several letters written and consistent reminder by the commission to the company on the poor feeding services rendered to Nigerian pilgrims during the Masha’ir period.”
A letter signed by the Chairman of the Board of Directors, Dr. Ahmad Bin Abbas Sindi. to the Chairman/ CEO of NAHCON, dated December 18, 2022, on the refund reads: “Reference to your letter no: NAHCON / AN43 dated 10/07/2022, regarding the poor quality of service and for the company to maintain the national relationship between us, SR542,033 has been deducted from the amount of the Masha’ir feeding contract.
The 2022 Hajj recorded poor services for Nigerian pilgrims, especially feeding, during the five-day peak of Hajj, for which the commission protested and wrote several letters drawing the attention of the company to the development.
Reacting to the refund after the weekly executive council meeting, yesterday, the Chairman/CEO, Alh. Zikhrullah Hassan, said the development was heart-warming, as it vindicated the commission’s tenacious struggle to right the wrongs done to Nigerian pilgrims during the Hajj by the Muassassah, especially in the feeding arrangement and the quality of services rendered during the period.
“I really want to thank my counterparts from the Mutawwifs for this role in ensuring that they refunded the money paid for services not rendered or poorly delivered,” Hassan said.
The Mutawwifs or Muassassah, as it is fondly called, is the Saudi company responsible for the accommodation, transportation and feeding of Nigerian and other African pilgrims in Muna and Arafat during the five-day peak Hajj rites in Makkah, Saudi Arabia.