Ghanaian Muslims planning to embark on the 2020 hajj would not have to bother about cost and rate of exchange as the Hajj Board and government announces a decision to absorb all increment.
This is in spite of a decision by Saudi authorities to increase visa charges for the 2020 pilgrimage by some $80.
Chairman of the Board, Sheikh I.C. Quaye, made the announcement Wednesday at the Hajj Village where a thanksgiving service was held for a successful 2019 Hajj.
The occasion was also for the announcement of the 2020 hajj package.
According to Sheik Quaye, the decision to cushion the pilgrims was arrived at when the Hajj Board met with the Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia.
He made the announcement in the presence of the National Chief Imam Sheikh Usmanu Nuhu Sharubutu and other Muslim dignitaries.
By this announcement, pilgrims who paid ¢19,500 to fulfil the fifth pillar of Islam last year will pay the same amount this year too.
The issue of debt overhang has been one that has over the years bedevilled previous Hajj Boards, a phenomenon the current hajj plans to change.
“We hope to end our tenure without any debt overhang even though we inherited huge debt from our predecessors,” he said.
Sheikh I.C Quaye also thanked President Akufo-Addo for putting measures in place to ensure a backlog of some 452 prospective pilgrims who could not travel although they paid their monies in was cleared in 2017.
The current Hajj board says it is committed and will continue to supervise a hajj that will be characterised with credibility as has been done since 2017 with support form the welfare endowment.
He disclosed that Dawah teams that have been set up to secure the spiritual and physical well-being of all Ghanaian pilgrims.
Regarding the issue of missing luggage by pilgrims, he said measures have been put in place to curb this situation from happening.
Chairman of the Board also announced that the Saudi officials awarded Ghana a top prize for emerging as one of the leading countries that organized the best hajj in 2019.
The immediate past Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Zubairu Dada, …