Timothy Olanrewaju, Maiduguri
A new group, Concerned Almajirai has called for the constitution of a stakeholders forum by the Federal Government to design a blueprint to address the challenge of Almajiri system in northern states.
Leader of the concerned Almajirai, Malam Onuchi Abdulghafaar at a press conference in Maiduguri, Borno State capital on Friday said neither repatriation of Almajirai to their states of origin by some northern state governors or outright ban could solve the crisis in the system.
“The act is not in line with the Islamic principle which enjoins someone who is in a place affected by a plague not to leave (to prevent the spread of the plague) and someone outside the affected area not to enter the area (also to prevent him from contracting the plague,” Abdulghafaar, also an almajiri and chemical engineering graduate, said.
He suggested that the stakeholders’ forum should comprise community, Islamic, religious and traditional leaders, parents, teachers, governments, civil society organizations and non-governmental organizations. He said the stakeholders could constitute a committee to draw a blueprint for the management of Almajiri system.
“The committee should extensively establish a data base of all the Tsangayas in each state with the number of students. This will assist the governor in having a prospect of intervention needed in the Tsangaya,” he disclosed.
He said the Almajiri system was not a bad form of education, stressing that it teaches students knowledge of the Holy Qu’ran and basic conduct.
He said he as an almajiri, also improved on his knowledge by studying Chemical engineering. He mentioned other notable persons in the north that passed through same system and had risen to the pinnacle of their career.
He charged parents in the north to take responsibility of their children. “Allah has given us capacity over the children He gave to us. Parents must take responsibility and cater for their children wherever they are seeking for knowledge. They should not leave them begging around to eat because they are learning,” he said.
The recent return of Almajirai from Kano and other states in the north to their home states over containment of coronavirus has generated mixed reactions from Nigerians.