Alhaji Zikrullah Kunle Hassan, Chairman of National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) on Wednesday, 25th August established a standing committee on Umrah in the NAHCON headquarters.
This was disclosed by Fatima Sanda Usara, the NAHCON’s Head of Public Affairs.
The 15 man committee is chaired by NAHCON’s Commissioner of Operations, Inspectorate and Licensing, Alhaji Abdullahi Magaji Hardawa.
The Standing Committee’s mandate includes constant evaluation of quality service delivery to pilgrims, proposing policy changes to be in tune with existing realities, superintending on all Umrah related matters and other incidental issues.
While inaugurating the standing committee, the chairman explained that the action was necessary for the Commission to be a top Umrah monitoring in the interest of the pilgrims.
Alhaji Hassan expressed confidence in the competence of the committee’s chairman and the selected members in delivering on the assignment.
In his acceptance speech following the inauguration, Alhaji Hardawa appreciated the Commission’s chairman for the confidence reposed in them to discharge this task judiciously. He observed that Umrah is an important focal duty of the industry which demands a high level of obligation from the Commission.
The Commissioner commended the former board for bringing sanity to Umrah operations which he observed, used to be fraught with dubious activities towards shortchanging intending pilgrims for maximum profit.
He reaffirmed commitment to not only consolidate on the board’s achievement but also build from where they left.
Therefore, Alhaji Hardawa informed that the standing committee will always be in place to ensure that pilgrims are maximally protected, “it will assess ongoing Umrah operations, address issues as they arise and make a proposal to management on policy adjustment that will capture current and emerging trends”, he said.
He called on all members to remain pro-active, gather information on developing trends and marshal all their experience in ensuring that Umrah activities do not degenerate.
It would be recalled that NAHCON has always encouraged Umrah pilgrims to formally request information on the packages they are paying for with details of the full services under such packages.
In case of breach of the bond, the short-changed pilgrim is urged to lodge a complaint to the Commission with evidence of the breach of contract for NAHCON to adjudicate on the matter. Similarly, tour operators are also to document the terms of the agreement entered with pilgrims in case an Umrah Hujjaj demands more than what was paid for.