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Subsidise Hajj fare for intending pilgrims, Reps tell FG

The House of Representatives on Thursday urged the federal government to intervene by subsidising the 2024 hajj fare to enable intending Muslim pilgrims participate in…

The House of Representatives on Thursday urged the federal government to intervene by subsidising the 2024 hajj fare to enable intending Muslim pilgrims participate in the pilgrimage to the Holy Land of Makkah.

The House also mandated its committee on Muslim Pilgrimage to engage the National Hajj Commission (NAHCON) in reviewing and reassessing processes and strategies aimed at making pilgrimage fares more affordable for intending pilgrims.

The call by the House followed the adoption of a motion by Rep Umar Shehu Ajilo at plenary.

Ajilo, while leading debate on the matter, described hajj as an important pillar of the Islamic religion which enjoins the visitation of the Holy mosques as well as other historical sites, among other significant rituals in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

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He, however, expressed concerns that this year’s hajj fares are fixed at “a very exorbitant rate” of about N5m; an amount which he said “is unsuitable for the middle and low-income intending pilgrims.”

Ajilo said given the prevailing economic reality, it has become necessary to reassess and review the processes and procedures adopted by the National Hajj Commission in arriving at the fares with a view to reducing it, thereby making it affordable to the intending pilgrims.

The motion was unanimously adopted when it was put to a voice vote by Speaker Abbas Tajudeen.

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