Saudi govt reads riot act to Nigeria pilgrims

Abuja - The government of Saudi Arabia has warned pilgrims participating in the 2016 hajj that it would arrest and prosecute those who violate its schedule, Naij reports.

The government was particular about the stoning of the devil
ritual at Jamarat.

The new warning is meant to forestall a repeat of the stampede
that occurred in 2015 in Mina which led to the death of more
that 2000 pilgrims.

A representative of the country’s hajj ministry, Sheikh
Mohammed, told Nigerian officials about the warning and
informed them that guides would be assigned to 250 pilgrims at
a time.

He said: “Any Pilgrim seen alone in Jamarat will be arrested and
will face he highest punishment,” the Saudi official said.

“No flight arrives or departs the Airport until it’s rime is due, we
intend to apply the same procedure for Jamarat.
“Take this schedule and timing as serious as the time for

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, had last month, directed
banks and authorised forex dealers to sell the Pilgrims
Travelling Allowance, PTA, to intending pilgrims at a
concessionary exchange rate of N197 to $1 according to
News24 .

In a circular marked, TED/FEMFPC/GEN/01/005, the CBN said:
"Each pilgrim is entitled to purchase a minimum of $750.00 and maximum of US$1 000.00 as PTA. The Federal Government has approved that intending pilgrims are to be sold the PTA at a concessionary exchange rate of N197.00 to the US dollar.

“No commission shall be charged by the banks for the sale of
the PTA to the intending pilgrims. The Central Bank of Nigeria
shall sale the PTA to the designated banks in Lagos and Abuja
and the accounts of the respective banks shall be debited as
soon as the funds are disbursed".

- News 24