Wed. Jul 24th, 2024

Appointment Of Hajj Commission Membership Still Incomplete, Nigerian Group Tells Tinubu

By Smart Emmanuel

A group, Independent Hajj Reporters (IHR) has called on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu of Nigeria to appoint the remaining members of the board of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) to ensure the smooth running of Hajj operations in the country.

President Tinubu had on 17TH October 2023 announced the appointment of Mallam Jalal Ahmad Arabi as the Acting Chairman of the Commission, a regulatory body that officiates Muslim pilgrimage activity in the country.

Tinubu had also announced additional members of the board and forwarded the same to the Senate for confirmation. All the nominees by the President have been confirmed by the Senate and inaugurated into office.

IHR in a statement on Thursday through its National Coordinator, Ibrahim Mohammed said the Board of NAHCON is still incomplete, as provided for by the Act establishing the Commission.

Section 3 of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) Establishment ACT 2006 under the Composition of leadership of the Commission clearly states that “the commission shall consist of the – (a) a chairman, who shall be, (i) the Chief Executive and Accounting Officer of the Commission; (ii) responsible to the Commission for the day-to-day management of the affairs of the Commission;

B (b) three full-time members and six part-time members representing each geo-political zone provided that two of whom shall be women;

(c) a representative each of the Ministry of- (i) Aviation; (ii) Foreign Affairs; (iii) Internal Affairs (Immigration); (iv) Finance; (v) Health; (d) a representative of the (i) Central Bank of Nigeria; (ii) Jama’atul Nasril Islam; and (iii) Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs.”

According to the statement, the recent appointments by Mr Tinubu are incomplete, as representatives of some key agencies are still missing and could affect the smooth running of Hajj operations in Nigeria.

“Board members representing the Ministries of Aviation, Health, Finance and Internal Affairs (Immigration), have all not been announced. Same goes for the representative of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

“These members often coordinate activities related to their establishments and some of them are very important and cannot be ignored. The structure of hajj preparations and operations requires NAHCON to function at full operational capacity as envisaged by the framers of NAHCON Establishment Act.

“For instance, the member representing the Ministry of Health should have been at the forefront of the ongoing recruitment of medical personnel for Hajj 2024. In the same vein, the representative of Nigerian Immigration Service should be helping secure Passports for intending pilgrims just as the representatives of CBN and Aviation should have been helping with facilitating the needed foreign exchange and preparations of selected airlines,” IHR said.

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