Adewale M, Kano.
The Kano State Pilgrims Welfare Board has exonerated its centre officer Salihi Haruna Makoda of fraud attempt on female pilgrim in Saudi Arabia.
Video footage showing elderly women from Kano accusing her centre officer (Makoda) of allegedly dispossessed her of $720.00 out of $800.00 in Madina, Saudi Arabia.
The clip that had since gone viral on social media shows the women displaying $8 of $1 notes at a Saudi Bureau de Change shop, claiming to have been defrauded of her Basic Travel Allowance (BTA).
Addressing a press conference in Kano, the executive secretary of the board, Alhaji Mohammad Abba Danbatta explained that the allegation against his staff was masterminded by unscrupulous elements to tarnish the image of Kano at the holy land.
While discrediting the claims of the female pilgrim, Alhaji Abba insisted that investigation carried out by the board in Madina revealed that the victim was recorded by some people identified as Tukaris to defame official of the state.
According to him, “when the board saw the video clip, we immediately constituted a 5-man committee in Madina to investigate the matter.
From the investigation, the board found that the pilgrim in question had been sponsored by her son, who handed over her care, alongside $500 of her BTA to a neighbouring.
“One we realised the plan was to ensure the women keep her money safe. For an elderly woman perform hajj for the first time, the son entrusted her in safe hand and we gathered that it was this guide that gave the women $8 to buy gold tooth when she requests for it”. Danbatta explained.
Abba said the findings indicated that the persons who instigated the victim to make a false allegation against the centre officer, are Nigerians residing illegally in Saudi Arabia.
The secretary posited that the illegal immigrants popularly call Tukaris who specialize in defrauding pilgrims at the point of fixing gold tooth, were however disappointed having found the pilgrim with $8 notes.
Alhaji Abba cautioned female pilgrims from Kano to be mindful of the criminal spray and imbibe the fear of God.