Earlier today I woke up with a smile on my face as many others did, it’s a Friday, weekend, there was rainfall all through last night so the weekend promises to be beautiful. I checked my WhatsApp and I saw some messages from my boss concerning the plight of the almajiri children.

Almajirai on their way to beg for food

Earlier this year, we had written about the history of the Almajiri “Tsangiya” system of education in northern Nigeria, (see this in the 16th edition of our magazine) but there was a whole lot of events that had happened after this.

The almajirai that were not from Kano state were deported to their home states (see link below) then we read even more troubling news, some of these children were transported to the South East and South South in trucks (see link below) and packed in like animals, note that these children are not from the East or the South, this can only mean that there was never a record of where they came from, no state, no hometown, no family that remembered them.

Today the 15th of May marks the International Day Of Families and the question that nudges in my heart is this, “where is their family, who cares for them to declare their child missing?”

We applaud the efforts of the Governor of Kano State, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje to reconcile these young children to their home States but there is a whole lot more to do.

Now that we know that some of these children do not remember their home States, we want to suggest that the Federal and States government work together in creating a home for these young ones, a home where they are well fed, clothed and educated formally, we suggest work together in equipping this children psychologically, morally and physically.

They may be young but they are people too with feelings that be nurtured the right way; as you celebrate this International Day with your loved ones, remember these young ones, never again should they lay by the road side to sleep, never again should they hold pans to beg for food, never again should they go a day without having their baths, never again should they put on tattered cloths with no shoes. They are children and they need to be loved.

Happy International Day Of Families

Written by: Ajayi Titilope

 

SI Magazine

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