Niger state commences pilot model schools for Qur’anic Pupils

Government of Niger State in North Central Nigeria, has launched an educational system of integrating Qur’anic Schools with the state education system as part of efforts to boost education in the state.

The State Governor, Abubakar Sani Bello, Who disclosed this at the flag-off of a pilot scheme of the Comprehensive Model Integrated Qur’anic Education (IQE) programme of the State in Minna, the State Capital, explained that the establishment of the IQE programme was borne out of concern for children who have been deprived of parental care as well as exposed to abuses, hunger and diseases among others, in course of seeking Islamic knowledge or share negligence.

Studies show that 69 per cent of Nigeria’s 13.2 million out of school children are from the Almajiri education system in northern Nigeria.

The governor, who further said the state government has already set up committee to incorporate the teaching of both Islamic and Western education, urged states in Northern Nigeria, with similar issue, to adopt and implement the programme.

He said that would eradicate the menace of street begging by minors in the guise of seeking for Qur’anic Knowledge.

“The programme is an experiment and Insha-Allah,we are optimistic of the possibilities of combining western education with local format of religious education in same place,” said Governor Bello

The pilot schools, to be located in all the eight Emirates in the state, was designed to teach both Islamic and western education and to inculcate a broad spectrum of knowledge and religious morals, which is bound to produce more reformed citizens as envisaged by the state government.

Governors in the Northern part of the country are making efforts in supporting the federal government to revive the Almajiri system of education, with the aim to strengthening both Islamic and western education as well as stop street begging athess the region.

The consultant of the programme, Sheikh Ibrahim Dahiru Bauchi,Who applauded the initiative of the Niger State government for initiating plans of integrating Local Qur’anic Schools with formal education, urged the Government to sustain the system to a conclusive end.

The Almajiri system of Qur’anic education, is an ancient practice that dates back to the 11th century.

Analysts are of the view that Sustainable Almajiri reforms must begin with the persuasion of religious and traditional stakeholders for the adoption of the Child Rights Act across the country, so as to have a legal framework for the prosecution of violators.

Source: Voice of Nigeria