The FCT Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board has reimbursed N432 million to 334 pilgrims who have expressed an interest in collecting their Hajj payment in 2021.
The board’s director, Malam Nasiru DanMallam, said this on a Press conference on the return of deposits to planned pilgrims in Abuja on Monday.
The Nigeria News Agency (NAN) reports that the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) instructed the State Pilgrims Welfare Boards to carry out the Hajj – Deposit to be refunded in 2021 to the intended pilgrims.
The policy followed the cancellation of the pilgrimage for international pilgrims by the Saudi authorities due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
DanMallam stated that the board prior to the cancellation of the Hajj had registered 1,714 pilgrim intentions who expressed interest in the religious commitment by the board.
“This number includes those who made their payments from the already canceled Hajj 2020 over have to wear. After the cancellation, the board informed pilgrims that they might want to collect their deposits to display interest and receive a refund.
“Thus, on Friday, September 10th, the board returned N432 million to 334 pilgrims who have expressed an interest in collecting their deposits.
“The board has made the refund without any deductions and the exercise is still ongoing,” he said.
However, the director, said that not all of the remaining 1,380 pilgrims have paid the minimum deposit of N1.5 million required by NAHCON.
He further stated that those who deposited less than N1 million will not be recorded in the central database could be provided by the regulatory authority for Hajj 2022.
“Therefore, the board advised those who deposited below the minimum amount to switch from the usual payment method for the Hajj seat to the Hajj Savings Program (HSS) initiated through NAHCON to allow pilgrims to pay for Hajj as they see fit.
“The Hajj Savings Program gives them a better chance of gradually completing their Hajj seat payment and participating in future exercises .
“However, those who have deposited up to N1.5 million and the intention to carry over their deposit to 2022 will certainly have priority if it turns out that the Hajj takes place and FCT gets enough slots to cater to them all.
”But those who intend to pilgrims should also note that their chances of getting the seat depend on the number of Hajj slots allocated to the FCT by NAHCON . “
DanMallam added that the board would not collect any new deposits from the intended pilgrims until it received the Hajj slots in 2022 from NAHCON.