Some Almajiris in Northern Nigeria

How Almajiris constitute hazards, breeding ground for COVID-19 ─Governor

* Their lack of hygiene, lack of shelter, proper sanitation responsible ─Dr. Ganduje

Alexander Davis | ConsumerConnect

As a result of their observable lack of good hygiene practice, lack of shelter, and improper sanitation, Dr. Abdullahi Ganduje, Governor of Kano State, has said that Almajiris are a breeding ground for the transmission of the destructive COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Ganduje disclosed this at the inauguration of a Special Rapid Response team to cater for over 2,000 Almajiris stationed in three mega stations: Kiru, Karaye and Gabasawa Local Government Areas (LGAs) of Kano State Thursday, May 14, reports The Sun.

The governor stressed Almajiris are vulnerable to the disease as a result of their lack of hygiene, lack of shelter and lack of proper sanitation.

Ganduje said: “From our investigation and data collected, we have three types of Almajiris in Kano State.

“The first group are those Almajiris belonging to other states of the Federation. The second group are Almajiris who are indigenes of Kano State, and the third group are Almajiris who cannot even mention where they come from or who their parents are, they have nowhere to go, some sleep under the bridges, markets, motor parks.

“But because of the Coronavirus climate we are in now, we have already banned begging and all schools are closed, these Almajiris constitute hazards, and they are breeding ground for Coronavirus.

According to Ganduje, “Because they stay in a congested environment, they have no defined place for them to sleep, no prescribed food for them to eat, no provision for sanitation and therefore they are vulnerable.”

The state has decided to pay special attention to the Almajiris by establishing a special COVID-19 response team to examine and protect them, he said.

He added: “We decided to examine all the Almajiris in Kano State. Our intention is to protect them and those who are negative we take them back to their parents, back to their states to ensure that they are free from Coronavirus.

“Those who are positive, we are not taking them back to their states of origin. We are putting them in isolation centres until they are cured and are confirmed negative.

“Then we take them to their respective states in a good condition with certification from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.”

The governor noted that the “Almajiris from Kano State will be enrolled in the integration process of the Almajiri system with the conventional system of education.

“Those Almajiris from Kano we have adequate arrangement for their education and those who cannot find where to go we are their parents and we are ready to cater for them.”

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