By JULMUNIR I. JANNARAL | Metro Manila News Bureau Chief
Intending pilgrims to the Makkah in Saudi Arabia may now refund payments they made after the Kingdom has finally cancelled this year’s Hajj due to the dreaded pandemic Covid-19.
Quezon City: The Bureau of Pilgrimage and Endowment of the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (BPE-NCMF) has issued guidelines for monetary refund of plane tickets and Mutawiff fee to the intending pilgrims in view of the cancellation of the Hajj 2020 brought about by the worldwide menace of the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.
BPE-NCMF Director Malo Manonggiring told the Philippine Muslim Today that they have prepared a pro forma letter addressed to NCMF Secretary Saidamen Pangarungan thru the NCMF regional director where the intending pilgrims or jamaah are given options for the refund of their plane tickets and Mutawiff Fee to be paid in dollar or peso currency.
Manonggiring said the intending pilgrims are also given the two options either to refund the amount entirely or to reserve it for the 2021 Hajj.
He said as requirements for the approval of the monetary refund, the intending pilgrims have to submit the following:
1. Certified xerox copy of machine validated PNB payment slip
2. Certified xerox copy of valid Philippine passport of the intending pilgrim
Manonggiring said he issued on June 28, 2020, a comprehensive memorandum for the refund of Plane Tickets, Mutawiff Fee, and Vaccinations Fee wherein he outlined the following guidelines:
Item A – STEPS:
1. Filing of application for claims for refunds of cancelled 2020 Hajj shall start at the Hajj Registration and Processing Centers (HRPC) where the pilgrim or jama’a has registered his/her intended Hajj. (Except when the claimant pilgrim personally appears at the NCMF-BPE for his/her refund, in which case, the BPE will facilitate his/her refund)
2. The pilgrim who desires to refund shall prepare a letter request for refund addressed to the Secretary of the Commission thru the Regional Director of the Hajj (HRPC) where he/she registered his intended Hajj and shall specifically state therein the reason why such refund is being initiated. The letter-request for refund shall be valid only when it is properly signed and affixed with the mobile contact number of the pilgrim/jama’a for validation and personal confirmation purposes.
3. The pilgrim shall then submit the letter together with the requirements specifically mentioned in Item B of this guidelines to the concern Pilgrimage Officer for properverification and transmittal.
4. The Pilgrimage Officer after verification of the registration of the pilgrim and the authenticity of the submitted requirements shall prepare a recommendation addressed to the Secretary of this Commission thru the BPE Director duly signed by his Regional or Provincial Director and transmit the same immediately to the BPE thru its email at firstname.lastname@example.org together with the scanned requirements for BPE’s proper evaluation and action.
5. The BPE shall then facilitate the refund and notify the pilgrim thru his/her given mobile contact number or thru his/her authorized representative for the release and receipt of the check/s for refund. The release of the refund shall be made only after the pilgrim or the representative has surrendered the original copies of the Machine validated payment slips.
For the Authorized Representatives, release of the refund shall only be made after a personal confirmation with the pilgrim thru phonecall is done. For those pilgrims who cannot come to NCMF Central Office to receive the check/s for refund, you may claim your check/s after surrendering theoriginal copies of your machine validated Payment Slips from the concern HRPC after it is mailed to them thru LBC.
6. The Pilgrimage Officer of the concern HRPC is enjoined to submit all the original copies of the machine validated Payment Slips and the Acknowledgment Receipts signed by the claimant over his/her printed name to the BPE Director, NCMF Central Office thru LBC immediately.
Item B – REQUIREMENTS:
1. Accomplished REQUEST LETTER FOR 2020 HAJJ REFUND FORM;
2. Photocopy of the machine validated copy of the PNBPayment Slip for the payment of Mutawiff and/or Vaccination Fee/s. (The Original copies are to be kept by the pilgrim and will be surrendered to the releasing NCMF personnel);
3. Recommendation Regional/Provincial Director of the concern HRPC.
4. In case of illness or inability of the pilgrim to come to the regional office, a Special Power of Attorney, shall be executed by the pilgrim.
PHILIPPINE MUSLIM TODAY