A recent research has revealed that 70 percent of the nine million Almajiris who engage in street begging across Nigeria are from north west geo-political zone,
The Dean of Post Graduate School, Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Kaduna, Professor Ahmed Adam Okene, who disclosed this during a workshop on street begging yesterday in Minna, also noted that 30 percent of children in Northern Nigeria were out of school and engaged in street begging.
The state government had organised the workshop to seek solutions to the problem of street begging in the state.
Professor Okene, who was a chairman of the event, further said that the only way to reverse this appalling statistic was through robust collaboration among governors in the region to check the abuse of the almajiri system in particular and street begging in general.
The dean lamented that the situation had made the region vulnerable to security breaches, like the one facing the nation at present, and noted that it could be better if efforts were made to integrate Islamic and western education.
He explained that Malaysia and Thailand had walked the path of the north in the past, but were able to overcome the situation with diligence and political will.
According to him, ‘applicable education’ would solve the problems of the country was facing, while the country needed reformation in all facets of its life to achieve the desired development.
An Islamic scholar and the Head of the Department of Languages, NDA, Dr Ibrahim Husam Imam, contended in his own submission that the problems of street begging could not be resolved without the involvement of Qur’anic teachers, who, he said, needed assistance from government and non-governmental organisations to keep their pupils off the streets.
The Niger State attorney-general and commissioner for justice, Alhaji Abdullahi Bawa Wuse, on his part disclosed that there were more than nine million Almajiris in northern Nigeria.