NAHCON not responsible for pilgrims’ $500 BTA reduction – Arabi

 

The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) Monday  exonerated itself from the purported reduction of Basic Travel Allowance (BTA) to less than the agreed $500 per pilgrim for this year’s hajj exercise.

 Chairman/CEO of NAHCON, Malam Jalal Ahmed Arabi, said this while responding to questions on a Dutsen Kura Communications (DCL Hausa), an online TV/ Radio channel.

The programme was monitored in Makkah, Saudi Arabia, on Sunday.

 He said the issue of paying BTA is the sole responsibility of State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Boards and not NAHCON.

Arabi added that: “Therefore, we are appealing to states and FCT to deploy every means possible to give pilgrims the BTA entitled to them.

“We in NAHCON had an arrangement with the states and FCT boards to give $500 US Dollars BTA to each pilgrim as contained in our documents.

“Pilgrims were informed that they will receive $500 BTA and there is no contrary official arrangement to that effect. Therefore, state and FCT ought to have communicated to the pilgrims any last minute challenges that might hinder full payment of BTA to avoid suspicion.”

 On complaints from Nasarawa and the FCT pilgrims, who were paid less than $500, the chairman said NAHCON had advised all states to meet with their pilgrims and their banks, especially the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to resolve the matter.