The state of insecurity in Nigeria is as a result of lack of care for children in the Northern part of Nigeria, a representative of the United Nations Children and Educational Fund UNICEF has asserted.
The Zamfara State Coordinator of UNICEF, Mustapha Shehu said in Zamfara that the increase in security challenges in the state and nation is directly proportional to the increasing number of out of school children and street beggars.
“At individual levels we have to do something from our homes to sponsor orphans and children of the less privileged in the society”, Shehu added.
The Director of Budget in the state, Alhaji Hamza Salisu stated that the state has on record 2 million Almajiris which is a big threat to the future development of the state.
Salisu said individuals as well as groups have a role to play in helping out though government can evolve policies to handle Almajiri issues.
He pleaded with parents and guardians to be responsible for their children and reduce social challenges.
The Director of Legal Affairs of the State House of Assembly, Mr. Nasiru Jangebe argued that the interpretation of the Quran for street begging is a misnomer as it has nothing to do with the Quran.
He said Alfas who defend street begging in the name of Islam are preaching error pleading that government should enact laws to tackle street begging.
The Advocacy and Communication Officer of Save the Children International, Mr. Nura Muhammed said the meeting is to evolve strategies to push for the signing of a Social Protection Policy by the State government.
Incidentally, the Federal House of Representatives Thursday saw solution to the Almajiri problem in the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC.
Speaker of the House of Reps, Femi Gbajabiamila wanted the House to amend the NYSC Decree to make the members teachers to be deployed to handle several Almajiris and children who are out of school and especially in rural arrears.
The proposed act may stretch the NYSC members beyond their service year in the special arrangement.
The Speaker said it will be for willing Corps members to be employed as teachers after the completion of their service year with government giving motivational impetus like sponsoring them for their Masters Degree.
- By Eniola Olatunji.