Niger State Pilgrim Welfare Commission has announced fares for this year’s holy pilgrimage to Mecca, just as it revealed plans to scan female pilgrims for pregnancy at the Minna Airport.
Disclosing this yesterday in Minna, the Executive Chairman of the Commission, Engineer Mamman Mohammed said pilgrimage would attract a minimum fare of N560, 250 and a maximum of N661,000 while talks were on with management of the airport for the installation of the scanning machine.
He said the decision of the commission to scan for pregnancy was informed by the experience of last year when a pilgrim from the state gave birth in Saudi Arabia leading to the National hajj commission NAHCON reducing 57 seats out of the 4,300 usually allocated to the state. The commission chairman stated that with the reduction in seats which brought the State’s total allocation to 4, 243 seats the body subsequently adjusted the medium Basic travelling allowance to N594, 000 per pilgrim.
He explained that the difference between the State’s fares as against the amount announced by the National Hajj commission (NAHCON) was N40, 000 across board as additional cost for accommodation in Mecca. Engineer Mamman disclosed that the state government would maintain its 2010 Mecca accommodation subsidy of N110,000 per pilgrim from the state, and stated that one week had been given to those who were yet to pay the balance of their fare to do so or forfeit the seat.