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President Muhammadu Buhari has said that his regime has done its best and will continue to do more by pursuing coherent and consistent policies to deal with terrorism.
This is as he urged Nigerians to be fair to his government in assessing the security issue in the country by reflecting on what it obtained when he took over in 2015, and the successes as well as performance which mark a decisive break from the past; particularly in the Northeast and the South-South, adding that the Northwest which had given the nation some “headache” will experience a turnaround for the better.
Buhari spoke on Friday during a visit to the State House, Abuja, by the Grand Khalifa of the Tijjaniyya Islamic Movement World-Wide, Tidjani Ali Bin Arabi.
The President, who said the current regime is well aware of its responsibility regarding security, urged citizens to take responsibility and show interest in their safety and complement what the government is doing.
He said, “We have done our best, and we will continue to do more by pursuing coherent and consistent policies to deal with terrorism. I hope God will listen to our prayers.”
To the Governor of Kano State, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje, who brought the Grand Khalifa to Nigeria, Buhari said, “We thank you for inviting them to come to pray for peace and stability in our country. We are grateful that they agreed to come.”
Ganduje, in introducing the Khalifa and his delegation, which included the Emir of Kano, Aminu Ado Bayero and the leader of the Tijjaniyya Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Sheikh Dahiru Bauchi, said the Kano State government invited the Tijjaniyya World Leader to the country to lead faithful in prayer considering the complexities around security in particular.
He said the visit of the Grand Khalifa had also rekindled the old ties between the Tijjaniya and the many cultural and educational institutions in Nigeria.
The Tijjaniyya leader in the country, Bauchi and the Grand Khalifa, Bin Arabi, extolled the existing cordial relations between Nigeria and Algeria and prayed for guidance and blessings for the country and its leaders.
Speaking to State House Correspondents afterwards, Ganduje said the Grand Khalifa’s visit is meant to rekindle the relationship “because Kano is an old civilization, with so many Ulama (Islamic scholars) from Algeria hundreds of years ago, who came to Kano to assist the development of Sharia leadership.
“We invited him and his team to pray for Nigeria for peace, stability and prosperity, and also to pray for peace and stability of Kano state and the whole of Nigeria. We are all aware of the security challenges we’re having, the federal and state governments, we are all doing our best.
“We offered national prayers for the peace and stability of this country. And to round it up, we decided to have a courtesy call with Mr President. They prayed for him and indicated the importance of the relationship between Algeria and Nigeria and their continued cooperation in prayers for peace and stability. That is what brought us to the villa.”
The Governor added that the delegation constituted a committee to consider education, commerce, and agriculture issues.
Asked about any sustainable structures to resolve the Almajiri issue, he said Kano has the highest number of Almajiri children in Nigeria. Ganduje revealed that there are now regulations to prosecute the parents of Almajiris and out-of-school children.
“But let me tell you, we have taken statistics. Most of these Almajiri are not indigenes of Kano State, and as Nigerians, they are free to live anywhere they want in this country. We have introduced free and compulsory primary and secondary education in Kano State. We have built many Islamiya schools. We have reformed the Almajiri system of education.
“We have also embarked on repatriation of Almajiris back to their respective states, some even to the Republic of Niger, Republic of Cameroon. But as you will know, unless there’s universal legislation, preventing the movement of school-aged children from one state to another is a problem that will remain for a long time because Kano is a commercial nerve centre of the Northern part of this country and also some West African countries.
“We have enacted a law; any parent that does not put their child into school will be prosecuted. So, now, we have established a whole agency that is now evacuating the Almajiri to their respective states. And those who are in Kano enjoy the free education facilities. So, that is the effort we are making,” he said.