Northern Nigerian Breaking News

Saving Scheme: Jaiz bank depositors protest over exclusion from Hajj

Hundreds of intending Hajj pilgrims on Tuesday protested in Kano over the non-allocation of hajj slots to them despite making full payments for the pilgrimage.

The protesters stormed the head office of Jaiz Bank PLC, the financial institution that processed their payment through a savings scheme, and the office of the Kano State Pilgrims Welfare Board.

The affected persons, numbering 284, said they were shocked to find out that after making payment, no seat was reserved for them, noting that some of them started the saving scheme since 2019.

Recalls that the first batch of the 400 intending pilgrims from Kano State had been airlifted to Saudi Arabia for the 2022 hajj exercise on Monday.

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One of the affected intending pilgrims, Auwalu Jibrin, said, “We are the ones the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria asked to open an account with Jaiz Bank and deposit our money there. The state pilgrim board has collected our passport and screened us and now we learnt that we have no allocation.

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“We are now left stranded without any assurance. Jaiz Bank had told us that of course there’s a problem and they are working towards ratifying the problem.”

5th aNNI

Sources familiar with the development told Daily Trust that names of the aggrieved intending pilgrims had been sent to the state pilgrim board and documented but were not included in this year’s hajj because of the reduced allocation.

According to a source, the state pilgrim board is constrained by over 100 names sent from NAHCON to be given allocation while many who saved for years under the hajj scheme could not be accommodated.

On his part, the Executive Secretary of Kano Pilgrims Board, Abba Dambatta, said that the board was doing its best to resolve the problem, noting that there was no allocation this year for those on savings’ scheme, especially those from Jaiz Bank.

He however said he was going to Abuja to make efforts in securing allocation for the 284 intending pilgrims.

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