Government & Politics

Bauchi State Governor Subsidizes 50% of Hajj Fare Hike Amid Economic Hardship

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Bauchi State Governor Subsidizes 50% of Hajj Fare Hike Amid Economic Hardship

Amidst the backdrop of economic challenges in Nigeria, Bauchi State Governor Bala Mohammed has taken a proactive step to alleviate the financial strain on intending pilgrims by subsidizing 50% of the recent hike in hajj fares. The move comes as a relief to many citizens grappling with the impact of inflation and currency devaluation.

Governor Mohammed’s decision, announced in a statement on Friday, reflects a commitment to prioritize the welfare of Bauchi State residents, particularly those aspiring to undertake the sacred journey to Saudi Arabia for the annual pilgrimage. With the cost of hajj pilgrimage soaring due to factors such as the forex crisis, the subsidy provides much-needed assistance to ease the burden on pilgrims.

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The subsidy initiative covers half of the increase in hajj fees, amounting to N950,000 per intending pilgrim from Bauchi State. Governor Mohammed emphasized the importance of supporting citizens during these challenging times, recognizing the significance of the pilgrimage and the financial implications it entails for many families.

In line with the governor’s directive, the state commission responsible for hajj affairs will facilitate the reimbursement of the subsidized amount to eligible pilgrims and ensure that those who missed the payment deadline are assisted in meeting their financial obligations for the pilgrimage.

The decision to subsidize hajj fares comes after the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) raised the pilgrimage expenses for the current season by N1,918,032.91. NAHCON attributed the increase to the prevailing forex crisis, which has significantly affected the cost of international travel and transactions.

Read More: FG Subsidises Hajj Fares With N90bn for 2024 Pilgrimage

To further mitigate the impact of the fare hike, the federal government released N90 billion to subsidize the 2024 pilgrimage expenses nationwide, demonstrating its commitment to supporting citizens undertaking the holy journey. Additionally, several other states, including Kano, Kebbi, Kogi, and Ogun, have implemented similar subsidy measures to assist their residents in fulfilling their religious obligations.

Governor Bala Mohammed’s decision to subsidize hajj fares underscores the importance of government intervention in easing the financial burden on citizens, particularly during times of economic hardship. The initiative is expected to alleviate the concerns of intending pilgrims from Bauchi State and ensure that they can embark on the pilgrimage without facing undue financial strain.

Source: Daily Trust

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