The Director and Chairman Executive Officer of ITEC Consultancy Services, Mal. Abdulwakeel Ademola Abdulwahab has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to, as a matter of urgency, appoint a new board for the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) following the expiration of tenure of the incumbent Chairman and members of the commission.
Mal Abdulwahab made this call while speaking at the 28th National, State, Local Governments and other HAJJ Stakeholders Conference held between 19th and 22nd November, 2019 at Green Minds Hotel, Opp. Utako Market, Utako, Abuja.
Recall that a travel agent, Masu’d Muazu, had recently dragged the Chairman of NAHCON, Abdullahi Mukthar, before a Federal High Court in Abuja for an alleged unlawful stay in office.
Mr Muazu, Chairman, Muntazam Travel Agency, Kano, instituted the case in a suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/935/2019 filed on behalf of the plaintiff by a lawyer, Ibrahim Alhassan.
Also joined in the suit is the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, and the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami.
Meanwhile, addressing participants at the conference which was held to x-ray the activities of any Hajj operations, look into the roles of each principal player of the operation, right from allocation of seats, sales of form, procurement of Visa and airlifting (out and inbounds) before trip for Medina and Mecca activities, ITEC director also charged the incumbent NAHCON chairman to throw in the towel and vacate the office alongside others.
He urged the presidency to expedite action in appointing new board for NAHCON so that, it will save the Ummah the pain of litigation.
According to Mal. Abduwahab, “the conference is just an independent forum where people freely express their opinions, observations and suggestions on how to improve on Hajj Operations. So far so good, the programme has achieved tremendously on pilgrims, training, BTA cash policy, Mecca and Medina feeding among others. Most of these achievements were recognized and appreciated by NAHCON, as indicated in their following letters to us.
“However, for the reasons best known to the present management of NAHCON, we are being subjected to series of intimidation and harassments; which has led to low turn-out of the present conference. This conference would not cease to be objectively addressing the issues concerning Hajj Operations in even if some people detest it.
“This conference, is an avenue for every Muslims to appraise, comment and commend each Hajj stakeholder without fear or favour but of recent, NAHCON, is trying to subvert this by saying that we have to register or seek for their approval before we could organize conferences on Hajj. This is a systematic way of subverting the truth. A good organization would appreciate any person or group of persons that is assisting in analyzing its activities for suggestion observation and improvement.
“The act that establish NAHCON does not state that only NAHCON should talk or organize conference, seminar or workshop on Hajj even a mallam in a remote village can organize talks on any aspect of Islam, Hajj inclusive.
“I urge the present management of NAHCON to have a rethink on this conference. They should give their utmost support to it.
“We are in a mixed society with other people who are not Muslims; we should be careful in our public dealings so that we will not be subject of mockery in the eyes of others; There is issue of operational misunderstanding between NAHCON and Medview, which is gradually becoming an issue of litigation. We urge both party to amicably settle their issue.
“Few weeks ago, a news item has gone viral when a travel agent, Masu’d Muazu from Kano dragged NAHCON Chairman, SGF and President Muhammad Buhari to a Federal High Court on tenure elongation of the (existing) present board of NAHCON and more especially that of its Chairman Barr. Abubakar Mukhtar.
“Our take on this issue is that we should not subject the Ummah into mockery. Those that appointed for a specified period of tenure should honourably leave and let other set of people come and try their ability at least if the other set could not leave the present one would not be there. If the reason for six months extension given to elongate the life span of the incumbent board by the president was because of their time expired at the peak of last year Hajj Operation now, the operation was over the issue of elongation and acting capacity should not be there.
“We urge the presidency to expedite action in appointing new board for NAHCON so that, it will save the Ummah the pain of litigation.
“While we appreciate the efforts and contributions of Barr. Mukhtar led administration in Hajj Operation development in Nigeria; we urge him to throw in the towel when the ovation is loud, who knows may be the next administration would be more pragmatic and perform better.”