Nigerians must Pray for President Buhari and State Governors to have the Political Will to Curb Indiscipline and Corruption-Prof Olagoke

ProfThe Almajiris comprise of downtrodden parents and their children, orphans and destitute. Alamajiri system of education commenced in Kanem Borno, a long time ago.

Sokoto and Borno caliphates were the pioneers in this system of education.

Under the system, children learnt moral upbringing from their parents. All schools at this period were within the vicinity of  the students. Matters pertaining to the schools were handled by inspectors who reported to the Emir of the province in question. These schools were financed by parents, zakkah, sadaqqah and in some instances through the farm output of the students.

With time, the British abolished the system of education, thereby ensuring that government no longer funded the system of education. This resulted in the Teachers and students resorting to begging for alms and undertaking menial jobs for sustenance. 

Sadly, presently, the system of education lacks qualified Teachers, educational facilities and other essentials.

Worried stakeholders of this system of education insist that proscribing the system would be a great disservice to humanity, since the government in the present dispensation has done next to nothing to impact positively on those in the system, even though government made use of the stakeholders to achieve self serving interests.

In this interview with Federationews2day, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke opines that for this and other issues to be resolved Nigerians must pray for President Muhammadu Buhari and all the 36 state Governors to have the political will to curb institutional indiscipline and endemic corruption which has consumed the fabrics of society. Excerpts :

The Federal Government is toying with the idea of doing away with the Alamjiri system of education, even though the administration of the former President Goodluck Jonathan spent considerable amount to ensure that the system of education remains. Do you think this would be beneficial to the country in the long run ?

During the tenure of former President Goodluck Jonathan, he ventured into building schools for nomadic education, which Nigerians hoped then, would have taken care of the Alamajiris, who lived like orphans,but returned their proceeds from the streets to some wicked surrogate parents.

Fortunately, President Muhammadu Buhari referred Nigerians to section 18 : 3 of the 1999 amended constitution, which places on all Nigerians, the obligation to eradicate illiteracy.

Free and compulsory education accroding to international standards demands that every government in Nigeria must provide free and compulsory education for every child of Primary and Junior Secondary school age.

The President also stated that it was indeed a crime for any parent to keep his or her child out of school for this period.

Almajiri educationBy implication, when the government fails to provide the schools, Teachers and teaching materials necessary for basic education, it is actually aiding and abetting crime.

Based on this assertion, the President emphasized on,with affirmation to all state Governors, the need to ensure proper education during the first nine years of schooling, to be able to inculcate in the children, the right moral values.

The President equally realized that the age long Almajiri system of education, resulted in the North of Nigeria witnessing orgies of crimes which have eventually snowballed into insurgency and uncontrollable acts of violence and terrorism.

The President, believes that the problems confronting Nigeria are rooted in the fact that a lot of people have been denied the opportunity to get formal education and this has led to the accumulation, over the years, of  large mass of Nigerians who have taken to crime, drug addiction among several other social problems. Again these category of Nigerians have also become willing tools in the hands of some elements in the wider society, who have always nurtured dangerous intentions.

The President then made mention of the Alamajiris, as a group to be proscribed, as they happen to be the symbol of informal education, that could be likened to absolute illiteracy, considering the fact that their activities spread beyond the geographical contraption of the North, to the nooks and crannies of Nigeria.

Firstly, as street urchins, they continue to become the future monsters, who work against society.

Almajiri education 2The President now went on, to recognize and recommend the Western region of Nigeria philosophy, under the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, who started free and compulsory education at both the Primary and Secondary levels, when he was Premier.

My worry and take on this issue, ranges as follows :

In the face of the present scenario of poverty for the people and kleptocracy in government, would the state Governors be able to meet up with the calls of Mr. President ? Which equally aligns with the UNICEF’s stand that education is the right of every child and the United Nation’s charge on countries of the world on the need for sustainable development.

Unfortunately, it is imperative for the state Governors to find a means of achieving this, most especially if one considers the two digit interest loans, even for those who have access, poor remuneration for workers, excluding the political class and the unfortunate state of dilapidation of the buildings of several public schools. All these put together have given way for the quacks to foray into the education sector. They put up schools that are never accredited through the laid down government rules and regulations.

Almajiri education 1Another challenge, is on the strength of the political will of Mr. President to abrogate the Alamajiri system in the North and the possible ‘’hostility’’ from the states outside the North, that would quickly seize the opportunity to ‘’deport’’ the beggars within their environment.

My Prayer and Nigerians must also pray for Mr. President and all the state Governors, for God to give them the needed will power and wisdom to curb institutional indiscipline and endemic corruption in both low and high places.

Equally, it is important for government to take the issue of functional education seriously, by first, reviewing downward, the wages and allowances of the political class as a form of the necessary sacrifice from them, to be able to make the Nigeria project feasible.

They equally need to down size the number of ‘’servers’’ in their cabinet to meaningfully control wastage in governance while we must equally look inward to resuscitate the ‘’dead’’ industries to be able to provide employment for those who are been turned out as fresh graduates for the country’ institutions.


President Muhammadu Buhari Governance Legislation Politics Nigeria

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