The Bayero University Kano Alumni Association on Thursday expressed concern over the state of education in the country with a call on the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency in the sector.
According to the association, the declaration will ensure that every child in Nigeria is compelled to attend primary and secondary schools in line with global trends.
President, BUK Alumni Association, Dattijo Usman, and Vice President, Dr. Nazifi Darma, stated this in an interview with journalists ahead of its fund-raising dinner scheduled for Saturday in Abuja.
Using the North as a reference point, Usman advised that the governors of the 19 northern states should take urgent steps to address the menace of Almajiri and hawkers to reduce social vices as well as insurgency.
He said, “Recent statistics have shown that 11 million children are not in school. The trend is increasing because out of this figure, 90 per cent (about 9.9 million) of them come from the North. It is our duty to draw the attention of policy makers and the National Assembly to ensure the implementation of UNESCO policy.
“Out of school cases are responsible for insurgency and Boko Haram. All these cosmetic Almajiri schools will not help matters. A state of emergency should be declared in education and all children of school age should be compelled to go to school.
“The government must ensure that children go to primary and secondary schools. It happened in other countries and Nigeria should not be an exception. We must do it here in Nigeria and every child must go to school, beginning from the primary and secondary levels.
“We are worried by this Almajiri menace. In fact, the 19 northern states governors should do something to reduce the trend. We hope to reach the governors. It is the responsibility of everyone of us to ensure that the future is better than our past.”
The Federal Government had claimed that it had built Almajiri schools across the northern states with the aim of providing integrated education that would comprise basic western education alongside Islamic education as a means of reducing the level of illiteracy in the North.