An estimated fifty thousand Moslems from Nigeria will be making a pilgrimage this year to the Hajj at Mecca in Saudi Arabia.
An estimated fifty thousand Moslems from Nigeria will be making a pilgrimage this year to the Hajj at Mecca in Saudi Arabia. Under new regulations, they will have to certify that they have paid their taxes for the past three years before being cleared to perform the Hajj.
This pilgrims's camp is near the international airport the Kano. The first groups of almost one thousand pilgrims flew from here in four flights on Thursday (4 October). Early in September the National Pilgrims' Board of Nigeria had told state administrators that pilgrims had to obtain their tax clearances so they could get foreign exchange for their journey. In Sokoto State, the Pilgrims' Welfare Agency sent clearance certificates to the Central Bank for approval.
At the pilgrim's transit camp, some had complained about long delays in getting their passports stamped and all formalities completed. Tax clearances were thought necessary because many pilgrims in early years had reached transit camps and been stranded there--through not having any money to either continue their journeys or return to their homes in various parts of the country.