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Ban On Street Begging And Gov Sule’s Abiding Love For Children, Almajiris.

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By Ali Abare Lafia

The recent signing into law of the Executive Order for the Protection of Children and Implementation of the Nasarawa State Child’s Right Law 2005, was indeed, a bold move signifying the abiding love and concern, His Excellency, Engineer Abdullahi Sule, has for children, especially children of the less privileged in the society, who are prone to abuse and neglect.

Even though Nigeria adopted the Child’s Rights Act in 2003, in order to domesticate the Convention on the Rights of the Child, only 16 out of the 36 states in the country, so far, were able to enact the act through their states of assemblies.The Act is meant to deal with several issues hindering the protection rights of children such as children living on the streets, children affected by communal conflict, drug abuse, human trafficking and weaknesses of the juvenile justice system amongst others.

Though the Executive Order for the Protection of Children and Implementation of the Nasarawa State Child’s Right Law was enacted in 2005, it however took the arrival of Engineer Sule, who has continued to voice his discontent on the abuse of children, to pass it into law.

Gov Sule

In fact, passing of the order into law requires not only summoning the political will, considering mounting religious, cultural and social denunciation against any perceived move to accord the Nigerian child a modicum of protection, but also a deeply entrenched affection for the welfare of the helpless child.Recent studies have shown that abuse in all forms is a daily reality for many Nigerian children and only a fraction ever receive help. In fact, according to the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), six out of 10 children experience some form of violence, with 13.2m children left to roam the street, out of school. Over 9m of these children are Almajiri, found mostly in Northern Nigeria.In fact, it has become a not too agreeable sight, coming across hordes of these homeless children, bereft of much needed parental care, prowling along major roads, begging for what to eat, and in some circumstance, begging for money to take back to their teachers as some form of support.

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Against the backdrop of the present reality, particularly with Nigeria gradually turning into a knowledge based society, where education and skills are becoming critical for survival, the Almajiri, who is denied both formal school and lacks worthwhile skills, has no place in the society.

The Almajiri is denied education, which is the key that unlocks the door of development. He faces limited chances in the future because he has been denied the right to education. With over nine Almajirai in the North, as disclosed by the Ministerial Committee on Madrasah, set up by the Federal Government in 2010, it’s no wonder that the economic development of the North is being adversely affected.

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The Almajiri phenomenon has become an albatross on the neck of the North, drawing serious concerns on the plight of millions of children who are forced to live on the street, who grow up to become adults without formal education, and as the Northern Governors Forum (NGF), in one of its meetings in Kaduna, there was the urgent need to take these children off the streets, especially that some of them have become susceptible to criminal activities.

The situation calls for concerted effort towards saving millions of children who otherwise would have been condemned to a live of penury, or even worst, of crime, especially with extremists religious groups waiting to conscript them.In Nasarawa State, the reality of the children on the street, particularly the Almajirai, has become alarming of late, particularly as a result of the banning of street begging in some core Northern states, resulting in the influx of Almajirai into the state, especially Lafia, the state capital.

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Drawing from the fountain of milk of human kindness, Engineer Sule, since his assumption of office, has continued to lament the plight of the Almajiri, who is forced to live on the street, denied of the

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PCRC Decorates Bauchi Governor As National Patron, Present Him With Certificate Of Honour

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The National leadership of the Police Community Relations Committee (PCRC) on Wednesday decorated Governor Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed of Bauchi state as its National patron.

Accordingly, the forum presented a certificate of honor to the Governor in recognition of his relentless efforts, philanthropic gestures and excellent performance towards the upliftment and development of PCRC in Nigeria.

Speaking during a courtesy visit to the Governor at the Council Chamber, Government House, Bauchi, the National Chairman of the Committee, Faruq Abdullahi Maiyama said the honour done to the Governor was in appreciation for his outstanding support to the PCRC when he was the FCT Minister notably the allocation of land.

He noted with satisfaction, the support and cooperation of the state government to the Police Community Relations Committee in the state especially the inauguration of the Community Policing Advisory Committee and the Community Policing Committee in Bauchi.

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“I am very impressed to be in Bauchi not because of the reception accorded to us, but this is the first time we are coming to Bauchi for our NEC meeting in which the governor would be decorated as the National Patron. Kauran Bauchi is a National figure haven served before as FCT Minister where he supported us in many ways.”

“Your Excellency, you are a man of the people and that’s why we decided to conduct our NEC meeting just to show you our appreciation for your support to us.”

The National Chairman said PCRC was committed to the promotion of peace and security in the country and pledged to work with critical stakeholders in order to achieve the set objectives.

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A statement issue by Mukhtar Gidado, Senior Special Assistant on Media, said Governor Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed told the visitors that already, the state government has inaugurated the Community Policing Advisory Committee and the Community Policing Committee to assist police in curbing criminal activities in the state.

The Governor who spoke through his Deputy, Senator Baba Tela said his administration will continue to support security agencies including voluntary organisations in a move to rid the state against all forms of criminal activities and social vices.

“I sincerely welcome you to Government House Bauchi on behalf of His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Bauchi state, Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed, we all know the importance of community policing committee and security to our development.”

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“In spite of the influx of the population of people who are coming to the state from neighbouring states, we have been able to keep the state safe with the support of relevant security agencies including voluntary organisations.”

Governor Bala Mohammed therefore reassured that, his doors will remain open for improvement in the security of the state and acknowledged the outstanding performances of security agencies in the maintenance of peace and security in the state.

 

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Nigeria @ 60: FCT Minister Of State, Dr. Aliyu Donates Cooking Gas, Food Items, To Trademore Flood Victims

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…. Warns Residents To Stay Off wmWaterways.

By Yahaya Idris, Abuja.

Hajiya Dr. Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu, FCT Minister of State.

As part of activities to mark Nigeria 60th Independence Anniversary, FCT Minister of State, Dr. Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu, has donated 50 pieces of Cooking Gas and assorted food items to victims of Trademore estate in Lugbe area of Abuja Municipal Area Council who were recently ravaged by flood.

The minister who visited the scene of the flood used the occasion to warn residents to stay off waterways, while assuring that the administration would approach the Ecological Funds Office for assistance.

A signed press released by SA Media, Austine Elemue, said Dr. Aliyu commended residents of the estate for demonstrating maturity and sense of patriotism during the disaster, stressing that governance is a collective responsibility.

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In her words: “I came this afternoon bearing in mind all that has happened to residents of this estate. Despite my tight schedules, I still finds it pertinent to come here in person to commensurate with you over the loss of life of our brother and the wanton destruction of property.

“I am here to also appeal to you as much as possible before any intervention from Ecological Funds office or any relevant government agencies to stay clear of waterways. Certainly, this year’s rain not only in Trademore is very heavy with colossal damages associated with it. This also tells us to appeal to our brothers in this estate and other parts who have constructions along the water-line to move to higher ground for now.
“One, it is better to be alive. This is not time to trade blame over who construct what on the waterways. But we are appealing that if you are along the waterline, you have to move before something else happen to you.

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“So I want to appeal to you that natural disaster do happen without advance notice. It is not within your power or that of government. We feel your pains and we know what it means to loss a life. I want to also thank you for your patience and understanding with the government and the situation we find ourselves in”.

The minister used the occasion to task Nigerians to celebrate the 60th independence anniversary of the country, noting that despite the challenges faced by the nation, October 1 was worth celebrating.
According to her, “Nigeria will be 60 years tomorrow. No matter the situation we find ourselves, October 1 still remains a day to celebrate. To come of age and to clock diamond age is not an easy task.

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Whatever anybody will think of Nigeria, we appeal to you to put the country first. Country first will move us forward, but patience and collective responsibility will take us further. Nation building is a collective responsibility”.

Earlier, the chairman of Trademore Estate Phase 3, Engr. Adewale Adenaike, commended the minister for her prompt response to the flood victims, just as he tasked the FCT Administration to address the situation urgently before it goes out of hand.

Adenaike, also stated that the ecological problem in the estate was beyond the capacity of the Abuja Municipal Area  Council, hence the need for the intervention of Ecological Funds office to come to the aid of residents of the estate.

 

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NAF Names Buildings After Arotile, 9 Other Officers

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Late Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile

The Nigerian Air Force has named a two-block of 4 x 2 bedroom married officers accommodation at the NAF Base in Abuja after the late first female fighter pilot, Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile.

This is happening a few weeks after a remodeled Pilots’ crew room ’ at the 115 Special Operations Group, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, was named after the pilot who died in a car accident at the NAF Base in Kaduna in July.

Disclosing this during the inauguration of the buildings at NAF Base Asokoro, Abuja, on Wednesday, the Director of Administration, Air Vice Marshal A. Pani, said nine other deceased officers, who died in active service, were also similarly honoured with blocks of buildings named after them.

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He said that the buildings were constructed by the Ministry of Defence as part of its 2018 capital project.

Pani stated, “These blocks are, therefore, being named after nine officers and one airman to immortalise them in recognition of their sacrifices.

“In this regard, at NAF Base Bill Clinton Drive, one of the two blocks of 10 x 1 bedroom transit accommodation is named after Flying Officer AA Mohammed (NAF/5082), who was KIA (killed in action) on 5 Sep 20 in Birnin Gwari while the second block of 10 x 1 bedroom transit accommodation is named after Flt Lt Akweke Junior Nwakile (NAF/3014) who was KIA on 21 Jul 14 while participating in Operation Lafiya Dole in the North -East.

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“Additionally, the two blocks of 4 x 2 bedroom married officers accommodation are named after Flying Officer Tolulope Arotile (NAF/4512F) who died as a result of road traffic accident on July 24, 2020 at NAF Base Kaduna and Flt. Lt. John Ayonoteh Adams (NAF/3104) who was KIA on Feb 19, 2013 while participating in Operation Zaman Lafiya.”

Abubakar, said the provision of befitting accommodation for the personnel and their families remained a top priority for the NAF.

“We are currently undertaking massive renovations, remodelling and upgrading of existing accommodation in NAF Bases across the country in order to bring them to acceptable standard,” he noted.

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