From Maduabuchi Nmeribeh, Kano
Kano state Governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has reaffirmed his commitment to integrate all Almajiris repatriated from other states to Kano into the free, compulsory basic education policy and other socio-economic development programmes.
This is coming against the background of the highly politicized repatriation of Almajirai children to their states of origin particularly in the Northern part of the country.
According to a Statement by the state Commissioner for Information, Malam Muhammad Garba, Kano state government has reaffirmed its commitment to the full implementation of its policy on the integration of the Almajiri system as a component of Free and Compulsory Basic and Secondary Education in the state.
The Statement added that, “to this end, the government has expressed its readiness to accept from any state of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, the repatriation of any Almajiri of Kano state origin and to treat them to the normal protocol of isolation, other medical check-ups and upkeep.”
Garba said that government has perfected all plans to enroll them in boarding schools with fully equipped dormitories where they will be fed and catered for.
He further stated that in compliance with its policy to ensuring that all school age children are properly enrolled into the basic education, the state government has provided additional three new boarding Almajiri schools within the three Senatorial Districts for the admission of Almajirai of Kano state origin including those recently repatriated from other states numbering 388 that included 96 from Gombe, Plateau 222, Nassarawa 14 and Kaduna 56.
Garba pointed out that in addition to the 12 Tsangaya Boarding Schools already in operation in the state with an enrollment of over 2, 800 Almajiri, government is also currently looking into the possibility of remodelling of the 33 Schools for Islamic Studies and 32 Technical Schools built across the 44 local government areas of the state to accommodate all the Almijirai within as well as those returning from other states as result of the repatriation.
He, however, said that in view of the prevailing socio-economic problems occasioned by the lockdown order, which forced the closure of their seminaries, most of the Almajirai pupils who are now starving and peripatetic, have expressed their enthusiasm to be united with their families.
He noted that should parents of the Almajiri fail to accept their children, government would not falter to take legal action in order to get the wandering children joined with their families.
Garba also called other states in the region to live up to their responsibilities and comply with the Northern Governors’ Forum decision that all Almajirai in the states should be taken back to their respective states, and also in view of the present situation stick to the protocols in dealing with the Almajirai children during this pandemic.