Sanwo-Olu promises improved hajj operation in Lagos

Chairman/CEO, Barr. Zikhrullah Kunle Hassan (left) and the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu during a courtesy visit by NAHCON delegation to seek support for the launch of the Hajj Savings Scheme in South West.

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has assured of hitch-free hajj operation in Lagos State.

Sanwo-Olu, who spoke while receiving the Chairman and Board members of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), commended several innovative moves by the commission and promised to support them in needed areas.

He assured that Lagos State would make adequate preparation and safety for participants during next hajj.

Chairman of NAHCON, Alhaji Zikrullah Kunle Hassan, said the commission has come up with a novel idea, known as Hajj Saving Scheme to make the exercise affordable for intending pilgrim so that they can save enough money to participate in the holy pilgrimage.

He said such initiative would help government to focus more on logistics rather than spending huge resources to sponsor people to on holy pilgrimage.

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Hassan assured that the commission is fully ready for next year’s hajj. “As you are aware, COVID-19 did impact negatively and this year’s hajj didn’t take place. But we are positive. Saudi Arabia has opened their country. The lesser hajj has started. So, we are positive that hajj will hold next year.

“We are also aware that we must go through all the COVID-19 protocols, even though our aspiration, prayer and hope is that before hajj, which should be sometime in June 2021, COVID-19 would have been defeated by the human race. But we would ensure that we follow all the necessary health guidelines to take care of our pilgrims over there.

He also stressed the need for young people to join hajj business in Nigeria, saying that the commission is ready to introduce young vibrant people into hajj administration.

Hassan added that the commission is working on Hajj Training Institute to training people involved in hajj operations.

Meanwhile, the board members and management staff NAHCON just ended a four-day working retreat. Themed ‘Anatomy of a Successful Hajj Financing and Logistics Planning’.

The Commissioner, Policy Personnel Management and Finance (PPMF), Alhaji Nura Yakassai, said the purpose of the retreat was to familiarize delegates with the operations NAHCON; specify the roles and responsibilities of each stakeholder in the management and affairs of the commission; to find ways of improving hajj operations in Nigeria and to keep board members as well as commissioners abreast with NAHCON’s business for the sake of good corporate governance.

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