N1.928m add-up: Plateau’s intending pilgrims stranded

Many intending pilgrims to this year’s hajj were on Friday stranded at the Plateau State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board, wanting to complete the additional N1.918 million, but neither the board executive secretary nor the director of finance and supply were present.

Our correspondent reports that the intending pilgrims said they had made earlier payments of N4.7 million as directed by the board, and were “now ready to make the additional payment of 1.918 million,” but couldn’t get any of the board officials to attend to them.

An intending pilgrim, Ibrahim Haruna Shuiabu, said he had since Tuesday last week made his additional payment and was at the board to present his evidence but the officials are not around.

“Having made the earlier payment of N4.7 million, we were later told to add up N1.918 million within four days; I made mine and today I am here as early as 9:00am, but no one is attending to us. I was told that the secretary was not around; also the director of finance wasn’t around.

“We are told that the board has stopped accepting any payment by 4:00pm of Tuesday last week,” he said.

According to him, should the board deny them access to this year’s hajj, it will amount to cheating.

Another intending pilgrim, Usman Hardo, said he was not aware of the closing date until two days ago.

“You can see here with us is our cash to add up to the earlier payment, but no one is even listening to us, some staff told us that we should wait for the director of finance of the board, and he is not here,” he said.

Several phone calls to the board information officer, Yasir Ismail, weren’t reachable, and he did not respond to text messages sent to his phone number, as of the time of filing in this report.