The House of Representatives has set aside March 12 to extensively debate on the challenges associated with out-of-school children in the country.
They made the decision during plenary on Wednesday, adding that no other matter is expected to be debated on that day.
According to the reps, this is part of the legislative agenda of the House, to pay more attention to the education sector.
Late last year, the President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan, had lamented that Nigeria has the world’s highest figure of out-of-school children – a record which he says is not enviable.
“Majority of these out-of-school children are in the northern part of Nigeria. And this is the highest in the world. It is not an enviable position,” he said.
He also noted that the government is making efforts to ensure that all out-of-school children return to school, stressing that git is not a privilege but a right that the government owes them.
“These out-of-school children are our responsibility. We owe them because it is not a privilege, it is their right to be in school. We shouldn’t allow them to continue to stray in the street.
“Whether we call them Almajiri or not, these are the leaders of tomorrow and there is going to be a widening gap if such people are left uneducated. They will also contribute security challenge to us if they have not already,” Lawan said.
Meanwhile, on Tuesday, February 25, the Kano State Government banned street begging by Almajiri children in a bid to fully consolidate the free and compulsory primary and secondary school education policy in the state.
Governor Abdullahi Ganduje made it known during the launch of Basic Education Service Delivery for All (BESDA) and the Distribution of Offer of Appointment to 7,500 volunteer teachers, held at Sani Abacha Stadium, Kofar Mata.
Lamenting over the ugly situation, Governor Ganduje stressed that parents or guardians of children still found out-of-school, would be taken to court.