The National Hajj Savings Scheme that would make it easier for all Muslims in Nigeria to go to Saudi Arabia to perform one of the pillars of Islam, the Hajj, has been launched in the Northeast and Southeast regions of the country.
Jaiz Bank and the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) in collaboration with the Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board of the respective regions flagged off the sensitization and awareness campaign in Adamawa, Taraba and Ebonyi States, respectively.
The ongoing launch and sensitization of HSS have already been flagged off in parts of the Northcentral, Northwest, Southwest and Southsouth.
Speaking at the occasions, Jaiz Bank’s Managing Director/CEO Hassan Usman, represented by the Bank’s Divisional Head, Corporate Services, Ismaila Adamu said the National Hajj Savings Scheme is a significant milestone for all stakeholders in the hajj ecosystem in Nigeria.
He said the importance of the scheme emanated from the fact that right “from planning, funding to actual operations, the scheme has the potentials to positively affect every act and actor in the process.
“With such a scheme in place, intending pilgrims that do not have the wherewithal can gradually plan and actualize their dream without stress by saving gradually.”
He said that even those who do not live long enough to complete their savings might still in “Allah’s infinite mercy receive the reward for hajj because they are pilgrims by bringing intention (niyyat) and action (amal) together.”
Chairman of National Hajj Commission of Nigeria, Barr. Zikrullah Kunle Hassan, who earlier flagged off the launch in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State and represented in Taraba and Adamawa States thanked the governments of the States for buying into the scheme.
He said HSS has several benefits amongst which is to assist the less privileged to save money over time to go to hajj and also to earn profit on their savings.
He said: “You don’t have to sell your farmland to go to hajj as the scheme will make hajj fare affordable.”
Chairman, Ebonyi State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board, Engr. Abbas, said the launch of HSS was significant as it will make it easier for Muslims to go to Hajj. “You don’t have to sell your items to go to Hajj. Ebonyi has fully integrated into the scheme and ready to work with NAHCON,” he said.
in his speech, the Chairman, Taraba State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board, Alhaji Hamman Adama Tukur, assured NAHCON and all stakeholders that the State Pilgrims Welfare Board would do its best to ensure the success of the programme.
Taraba State Governor, Arch. Darius Dickson, represented by the Commissioner of Science and Technology, Alhaji Alhassan Hamman said hajj is an important pillar of Islam that every Muslim is expected to perform.
He said it is because of the importance of this exercise that the Taraba State government got involved in ensuring that all necessary support is being given to Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board for hitch-free and successful Hajj operations
He said: “I therefore, urge our Muslim faithful to use the opportunity to harness the benefit of the scheme. I call on the Muslim Ummah to also imbibe the saving culture and long-term planning to key into the Hajj family. I will like to remind you that this administration encourages programmes that have positive socio-economic impact on Tarabans and the Hajj Savings Scheme is one of them.”
Speaking in Yola, the Executive Secretary, Adamawa State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Commission Alhaji Sani Abubakar, said the Council will go to every nook and cranny to enlighten the public on the scheme.
Flagging off the scheme, governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri of Adamawa State, represented by the Secretary to State Government, Engr. Bashir Ahmad, urged Muslim Ummah to take advantage of the newly introduced scheme.
He expressed the state government’s determination to fully support the scheme to ensure its success.