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Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, has said the Boko Haram insurgents have their strong membership drive in Almajirai in the North.
Almajiranci is a system of Islamic education practiced in northern Nigeria and the male gender seeking Islam knowledge is called Almajiri, female gender is Almajira, and the plural is almajirai.
Ganduje, who spoke during the public presentation and launching of former President Goodluck Jonathan’s book on Tuesday in Abuja, described the Almajiri issue as a big problem to the North.
“There is no doubt Boko Haram succeeded in Nigeria because they have foundation, a recruitment base in the Almajirai who are hugely indoctrinated,” Ganduje said.
The governor commended the former President for his contribution to improving the standard of education in the country, and particularly, the setting up of Almajiri schools during his reign.
“Jonathan widened and deepened the Almajiri system and we are modifying the Almajiri system in Kano and creating more of such schools in the state.
“The Almajiri system was a good one when it was created because it helped the children to recite the Holy Qur’an.
“There was no issue of begging then.
“But later on, the system was adulterated, that is why we find ourselves in this present condition.
“The curriculum then was just the recitation of the Holy Qur’an, but that’s not enough for Islamic education,” Ganduje said.
Speaking, Jonathan said: “We need to elevate the Almajiri from their present level.
“If we leave them the way they are, it’s going to cause a lot of problems for us.”
Dignitaries at the occasion were; Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Udom Emmanuel; Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar; Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed who was represented by a former Minister of Special Duties, Tanimu Turaki, among others.