- Rochas Okorocha has cautioned the northern government against the maltreatment of Almajiri kids
- The former Imo governor warned that one of the Almajiri urchins can become the president of the country
- Okorocha enjoined the northern government to provide jobs and basic necessities for the kid beggars in order to secure their future
Rochas Okorocha, immediate past governor of Imo state, has leapt in defence of the Almajiri kids following the tumult recently generated by their repatriation due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking with BBC Hausa in an interview on Monday, June 1, monitored by Legit.ng, Okorocha, now representing Imo West, said Almajiri kids are normal children who deserve an open arm of the society.
The former governor also submitted that an Almajiri kid can become a president of Nigeria in the future, hence the need for the government to give them deserving attention that will secure their future.
This publication recalls that since the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic in the north region, more intrigues have continued to be playing out with northern state governments hitting soft on one another over the repatriation of the street urchins.
Almajiri, also known as Almajiranci or Almajirai is a system of Islamic education in northern Nigeria for the male gender seeking Islamic knowledge. Under the system, a boy is mandated to travel in search of knowledge.
Okorocha called for the end to the system that has seen many young boys abused, with the repatriation saga being the last straw breaking the camel's back.
“Help to educate these children, give them jobs, who knows one of them could be a President some day,” Okorocha said.
“The governors and other rich Individuals should help transform the Almajiri system of Islamic education, instead of subjecting them to humiliation."
The former governor ascribed the system to poverty and hunger predominant in the north, adding that it has its origin in the migration of the Prophet Muhammad from Mecca to Medina due to extreme persecution from his kins.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had reported that Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, Kano state governor, has decried the treatment of almajiri children, saying the street urchins are being used for unnecessary publicity instead of them to be received with open arms.
Speaking at a media briefing on Sunday, May 10, Ganduje said the almajiri in Kano were returned back to their home states "in good faith" and in accordance to procedures of Northern Governors' Forum.
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