As part for its responsibility to ensure that Umrah Pilgrims enjoy commensurate services, the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has dispatched a team to Makkah to monitor, evaluate, take necessary action and report on activities of Umrah pilgrims as well as licensed service providers.
This was contained in a statement signed by the head of Public affairs division of the commission, Fatima Sanda Usara on Wednesday.
“In view of the above, the commission has created a pilgrims care contact numbers meant to address the needs of pilgrims. The numbers are as follows:
“However, NAHCON has enjoined pilgrims to, henceforth, verify and determine the package they are paying tour operators/service providers for even before embarking on the journey.
“Doing this is important to facilitate any role NAHCON would be playing in the interest of the Umrah pilgrim-whether in sanctioning defaulting tour operators or even the Umrah pilgrims themselves.
“Doing this will eliminate any chances of being shortchanged and reducing the pilgrims’ tendency of expecting too much from his/her service provider,” the statement said.
The statement further cautioned pilgrims against overstaying their visa expiry date.
It said such an overstay carries with it multiple penalties- arrest, detention, six months imprisonment, a fine of 50,000 Saudi Riyals and deportation.
“Similarly, for service providers/ tour operators who fail to report visa violators to necessary authorities or aid overstaying of Umrah pilgrims in the holy city, they risk a fine of 100,000 Saudi Riyals per violator,” NAHCON said.