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NAHCON hikes hajj fees, registered pilgrims to pay N1.9m top-up



The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), on Sunday, announced adjustments to Hajj pilgrimage fees for 2024.

Existing registrants who secured their slots before the February 12th deadline will need to pay an additional N1.9 million.

This increase comes due to fluctuating exchange rates. NAHCON emphasizes that pilgrims must settle the outstanding balance by March 29, 2024, after which their applications will be considered invalid.

For new registrants hoping to participate in this year’s Hajj, the total cost has risen significantly. They will now be required to pay the full sum of N8.2 million, a substantial increase compared to previously announced fees.

NAHCON’s statement, signed by Assistant Director of Public Affairs Fatima Usara, advises potential pilgrims to act swiftly. Those already registered should prioritize settling their dues before the deadline to secure their place.

In her statement, Usara explained that late and non-remittances of fares pushed the commission beyond the deadline given by the Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, noting, however, that the government had intervened by appealing for cost reductions.

The intervention could, however, not cover pilgrims who had paid the initial fare, leading to calls for state governments’ and individuals’ support for the pilgrims, which reduced the balance to the N1.9m.

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“The good news now is that with naira having appreciated to N1,474.00 to a dollar over the preceding week and after due consultation with stakeholders, coupled with NAHCON’s desire to ensure equitable spread of the Federal Government’s intervention to all the already registered pilgrims whose payments have been received, the commission resolved that each pilgrim would now have to pay a balance of N1,918,032.91 in accordance with the current foreign exchange rate.

“Intending pilgrims that still wish to participate in the 2024 Hajj are by this release advised to proceed and pay a balance of N1,918,032.91 latest by 11:59 pm of 28th March 2024.The commission will shut down its system by 29th March and no other payment would be accommodated after,” the statement read.

Meanwhile, intending pilgrims registering for the first time will now have to pay no less than N8m as total fare for the Hajj exercise.

“However, any new registration for 2024 Hajj from today, 24th of March, will attract the full sum of N8,225,464.74 from the Adamawa/Borno axis. From the North zone, fresh depositors will pay N8,254,464.74, whereas fresh payments from the Southern zone will attract N8,454,464.74 as Hajj fare All categories are to pay within the same deadline,” the statement added.

Pilgrims who wish to withdraw their funds have also been advised to formally request from their States’ Pilgrim Boards, while stakeholders willing to intervene on behalf of their pilgrims have been urged to do so within the next four days.

This fee hike is likely to impact many Nigerians who aspired to perform Hajj in 2024. The significant rise in costs may place additional strain on those who had already budgeted for the pilgrimage.

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