Nigeria: Govt Kicks Over Poor Quality of Food Served Nigerian Pilgrims in Saudi Arabia
The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has conveyed dissatisfaction with the quality of food that was served pilgrims in Mina and Arafat in this year’s Hajj.
The Chairman of NAHCON, Alhaji Zikrullah Kunle Hassan, expressed the displeasure at a meeting held in Mecca yesterday with members of the Tawafah Company for Pilgrims of African Non-Arab countries generally known as the Mu’assasa.
In a statement issued yesterday by its spokesperson, Fatima Sanda Usara, NAHCON said it had requested the company to refund the pilgrims for the poor service.
The meeting also enabled NAHCON to seek explanation for the reasons for the Private Tour Operators IBAN account accreditation setback and the way forward.
Chairman of the Mu’assasa, Mr. Ahmad Sindi, who promised to consider NAHCON’s demand for request for reimbursement arising from poor feeding, said from next year, the company would only work with well-established caterers that have adequate manpower and sufficient facilities.
In addition, he stated that they may even require bank guarantees before accepting any recommended caterer.
He attributed the issue of IBAN account to lateness in this year’s hajj announcement to issues relating to mismatch in the account numbers and account holders’ names on one hand and inaccurate account numbers on another hand.
Sindi assured everyone that the monies were intact and would be returned to NAHCON’s account as soon as the Mu’assasa receives a formal letter of request to that effect.
The company’s Vice President, Mr. Muhammad Burhan Saifuddeen, gave a breakdown of the remaining amount yet to be credited to 33 tour operator companies.
Also, Chairman, Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, Adamu Bulkachuwa; Chairman, House Committee on Pilgrimage, Hon Abubakar Nalaraba; representatives of Association of Hajj and Umrah Operators in Nigeria (AHUON), representative of Nigerian Diplomatic Corps and senior officers of NAHCON were present at the meeting.
Meanwhile, at the annual post-Arafat meeting held last Wednesday, the NAHCON chairman disclosed that unlike circumstances surrounding this year’s hajj, preparations for next year’s hajj had commenced from July 13, 2022.