By Lateef Ibrahim Abuja
As this year’s Children Day celebration was marked globally yesterday, a nongovernmental organisation, NGO, the Muslim Rights Concern,
MURIC, has harped on the need for the federal and state governments to pay attention to the issues of almajiri children, cultism, area boys and drug addiction among children which are now constituting threats to society.
The NGO specifically urged the government, at various tiers, to pay attention to “these hydra-headed monsters which are capable of swallowing up the Nigerian social order”.
The organization gave the advice yesterday in a statement issued by its Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola and made available to the media online.
The MURIC reasoned that these threats can be reduced to the barest minimum within a few years if governments at different levels commence action now.
The NGO equally charged the federal government in particular and all state governments (except Lagos) to extend women’s maternity leave to six months
According to the statement, “more than ten million al-majiri children face exposure to illiteracy, disease, hunger, starvation, homelessness and child abuse.
“Although the al-majiri system exists mainly in Northern Nigeria, the health and future of a larger number of underaged Nigerians are being slowly destroyed by cultism, drug abuse and the area-boys syndrome.
“The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) calls attention to these hydra-headed monsters which are capable of swallowing up the Nigerian social order.
“We charge the Federal Government and all state governors to focus their energy on the rehabilitation of children involved in all these anti-social vices. “Special centers should be established by governments at federal, state and local government levels for the reengineering of the minds of these children.
“Parents’ responsibilities start from children’s infancy when the mother must breastfeed her infant for two whole years in other to make the child wholly human.
“Children who are breastfed for less period end up being less human because mechanized milk only ends up endowing children with animalistic traits, exposure to opportunistic diseases and a stunted mental growth.
“This has been responsible for the emergence of the area boys’ syndrome and symptoms of violence among the youths of today.
“Children who are breastfed for only one year inherit only fifty percent human qualities and fifty percent of brutish mannerisms “Those breastfed for just three months are worse as they absorb about twelve and a half percent of the Adamic chromosome and eighty eight and a half percent of animal behaviourial pattern.
“Therefore women have a big chance of turning around worsening morality in society.
“In this respect, we appeal to the Federal Government to follow the good example of the Lagos State government (LASG) by raising women’s maternity leave from three months to six. It will be recalled that LASG did this about three years ago.
“Three months maternity leave makes no sense for women who are expected to breastfeed for two years. It should be noted that paediatricians now recommend that women should give their infants breastmilk only for the first six months after birth.
“This reveals the divine originality of Islam as only the 1,400 years old Glorious Qur’an recommends this among all other scriptures.
“Fathers also have the duty to feed, accommodate and educate their children up till the age of forty years according to the Glorious Qur’an (46:15).
“The al-majiri practice whereby parents send their children out to Mallams only to abandon them there to start begging is therefore contrary to the teachings of Islam.)