I wonder why the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has taken over almost all the 2022 Hajj operation (schedules /responsibilities) from the states pilgrims Board which is unusual.
That decision could be behind the reasons for the challenges faced by NAHCON in terms of policy inconsistencies, flights problem and the inability to select eligible intending pilgrims on time before the commencement of 2022 Hajj. These factors contributed drastically to the allegations of suspension or cancellation of issuance of visa that abound.
In order to address the aforementioned anomalies in future operations, NAHCON should decentralize vital operational activities to States pilgrims Board as was the case in the past. This will make it easy for administrative and regulatory purposes.
Seat allocations should also be distributed strictly based on first come, first serve basis without favoritism as witnessed this year.
From the religious perspectives, the about 700 Kano state intending pilgrims who missed the Hajj this year, should exercise patience and believe that it is because Almighty Allah has not yet answered their call to perform Hajj.
However, I urge NAHCON to automatically enroll these pilgrims as the first set of pilgrims for 2023 Hajj and also promise that they will be the first set to be airlifted to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 2023.
However, those who want to be refunded should have access to their money without any delay accompanied with a letter of apology from NAHCON.
I understand that the Saudi Arabian Authorities have sent a letter of commendation to the federal government of Nigeria for the successful conduct of 2022 Hajj operations and that is quite an irony to those pilgrims who knows where the shoe pinches.
I quite agree that for every successful Hajj operation, there are usually accompanying challenges. But this year’s Hajj has made Nigerian pilgrims to undergo serious psychological trauma that has never been witnessed before in the history of Hajj operations in Nigeria
There is therefore, the urgent need for the Federal Government to set up a panel to review the 2022 Hajj operations so that history will not repeat itself in subsequent Hajj exercises.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
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