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Hajj Commission Denies F’s Waiver To 2016 Pilgrims

By Ganiyu Nasirudeen

ABUJA, NIGERIA (AFRICAN EXAMINER) – As reactions continue to trail the exchange rate flexibility for the year’s pilgrims, the National Hajj Commission has denied being given FOREX waiver by the Federal Government (FG).

The Commission’s denial was made in a statement issued Sunday in Abuja by its Head of Media, Alhaji Uba Mana.

Alhaji Mana clarified: “If there is one thing that the Government did for the Nigerian pilgrims, it was to allow the exchange rate prevalent at the time of payment of Hajj fare in February when the current flexible exchange rate was not in action to subsist.

“It is therefore wrong and mischievous for some persons or media organizations to peddle unfounded claims that the Federal Government gave the Nigerian pilgrims a waiver.”

It would be recalled the Presidency in a statement issued last Friday in Abuja and titled: “FOREX for Hajj 2016” explained that the exchange rate of N197:00 to a Dollar was approved by President Muhammadu Buhari about three months ago, “much earlier than the new FOREX regime came into being”.

Buhari’s SSA on Media and Publicity Mallam Garba Shehu indicated that the Hajj Commission Chairman has confirmed that the policy was “non-discriminatory”.

The statement further confirmed that the rate was approved for Christian and Muslim pilgrimages for this year, adding that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has offered an explanation.

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