NewsNigeriaPoliticsOrganization Tells NAHCON, States to Disclose BTA Of Prospective Pilgrims

A Civil Society Organisation (CSO), Independent Hajj Reporters (IHR) has asked the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria, (NAHCON), the States Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Boards and Agencies to disclose how much the Hajj 2024 intending pilgrims would receive as Basic Travel Allowance (BTA).

According to IHR, it has become necessary to draw the attention of the NAHCON and state Hajj agencies that the 2024 Hajj fare they announced so far didn’t indicate the amount that will be given to intending pilgrims as BTA contrary to usual practices over the years.

This was contained in a statement signed by the national coordinator of the group, Ibrahim Muhammed and made available to newsmen.

The BTA, IHR said, is an allowance of foreign currency that a Nigerian citizen, in this case, the pilgrims to Saudi Arabia is allowed to draw from a Nigerian bank when travelling abroad. It’s a part of the country’s foreign exchange controls and such money is added to the hajj fare components.

“Traditionally, the announcement of Hajj fare by NAHCON always comes with a provision of BTA for each intending pilgrim. This is meant to allow pilgrims to prepare their minds on how much they will receive and make their financial plans accordingly.

“For example, the 2023 Hajj pilgrims paid an average of N2.9m inclusive of $800 BTA. Hajj fare computations consist of local and foreign-service components with BTA for pilgrims.

“However, the previous board of NAHCON later slashed the 2023 Hajj BTA to $700 owing to what they described as differentials in airfare tickets. This year’s hajj fare was announced without stating how much the BTA is, even when additional hajj fare was announced,” IHR said

The group said the BTA is given to pilgrims on the day of their departure to Saudi Arabia as pocket expense funds to enable pilgrims take care of certain financial needs while in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

“It is strange that the two-hajj fares announced so far by NAHCON has not announced provisions for BTA for intending pilgrims even after another announcement on the increment of the fare from the N4.899 to N6.617”.

“We are calling on NAHCON and States Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Agencies to immediately announce how much the 2024 hajj BTA to intending pilgrims is,” IHR said.

Uzoamaka Ikezue (Staff Reporter)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By :