ILIGAN CITY (January 21, 2019) – National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) Secretary Saidamen Pangarongan has settled illegal pilgrims, who coped to perform Hajj without track of records from the Philippine embassy and in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, by implementing codec identification system.
Machine-readable “Quick Response (QR) code” consisting data information of individual pilgrims has been provided by NCMF to Hajj IDs in reinforcing security between KSA and the government. QR code generally used to identify matrix-labels by decoding two-dimensional barcode and shows alphanumeric text result typically on smartphones.
NCMF discovered illegal pilgrims in 2018 that checked-in to Mina and Arafah hotels in KSA using fake IDs according to Information Bureau Director Jun Alonto Datu Ramos.
Fake IDs manufacturer was unidentified however Datu Ramos expressed that they are looking to earn additional buck.
Datu Ramos posted on Facebook February 19 that the government owed 11 million pesos to Elyas Company in KSA in 2018.
Datu Ramos said, “This debt, if remained unpaid, would have been enough grounds to block all Philippine pilgrims from joining the Hajj until the amount has been fully paid.”
Fact-finding Committee formed by NCFM Secretary Pangarungan to probe alleged illegal activity.
NCMF addressed to Filipinos that the “Hajj is a religious obligation for all Muslims and not a platform for rackets and personal vendettas.”
The Filipino pilgrims, after Sec. Pangarungan negotiated and settled the 11 million debt, now allowed joining the Hajj without some cost to the government.