The Adamawa State Government has commenced repatriation of Almajiri children to their states of origin.
The government on Wednesday sent off the first tranche, comprising 132 of boys who are indigenes of Gombe State, said to be one-third of the Gombe Almajiri population in two local government areas of Adamawa State.
The repatriation, though directly informed by efforts to contain COVID-19, has the larger intention of checking the Almajiri system in the state.
Addressing newsmen before the departure of the Almajiris at Capital School, Yola, Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Malam Bashir Ahmad, said the process is permanent.
He asserted that although the decision to repatriate Almajiris was reached at the level of Northern Governors’ Forum in view of how Almajiris are usually crammed into small spaces and made vulnerable to COVID-19, the Almajiri system will no longer continue in the state even after the coronavirus pandemic.
He said Adamawa State itself has also received some Almajiris, who are its indigenes, from Gombe, Nasarawa and Kaduna states, reiterating that the government is ready to receive all its indigenes and cater for them.
“Government has engaged all the Almajiri teachers in the state and they promised absolute cooperation towards the successful repatriation of all the Almajiri children,” he said.
The Gombe-bound Almajiris were conveyed Wednesday afternoon in eleven 14-seater buses from the fleet of Adamawa Sunshine Transport Company.