Gov. Sani calls for action on Islamic education for skills acquisition

Supreme Desk
14 Jun 2023 10:55 AM GMT
Gov. Sani calls for action on Islamic education for skills acquisition
He emphasized that it was important to equip young people with skills that would enable them compete globally and contribute meaningfully to the society.

Gov. Uba Sani of Kaduna State has called for development of a framework for reinvention of Islamic education to align with global dynamics in equipping youths with life skills.

The governor made the call while addressing a three-day conference on Islamic Learning and Scholarship in Africa, organized by Arewa House in conjunction with the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) in Kaduna.

Sani, who was the Chief Host at the conference, described it as timely and apt in projecting the contribution of the Muslim world to the global knowledge, noting that the Sokoto Caliphate held the distinction of being a leading contributor of knowledge in Africa.

He said famous Islamic reformer, Sheikh Usman Bin Fodio and his brother Sheikh Abdullahi Fodio, made enduring contributions in areas of moral leadership, spiritual knowledge, agriculture and commerce.

He emphasized that it was important to equip young people with skills that would enable them compete globally and contribute meaningfully to the society.

Speaking at the event, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, said over 3.2 million books from 200 works of Islamic scholars from the Sokoto Caliphate had been edited, published and distributed across Nigeria.

The Sultan said the books were published in English, Arabic and Hausa languages, stating that the exposure of African heritage would help restore the identity of Africans, their worth and prepare them for the future.

“The Caliphate leaders alone wrote over 300 works, considered the works of the daughter of Usman Danfodio Nana Asma’u and some of his students like AbdulKadir zul Mustapha.

According to him, those works covered wide range of subjects from well known Islamic scientists of tafsir, Qur’an, sociology, economy, political science and medicine.

“We have so far edited and published over 3.2 million books of 200 works of these great leaders and they have gone round the country and libraries of individuals and schools across the world.

“These books are in English, Arabic and Hausa and insha Allah at the end of this conference, I will bring some of these books to our guests at least those from outside the country.

“We are in the era that European imperialism have done a lot to hide these treasures from us by keeping them away from the curriculum of government schools among other policies.

The sultan also explained that they were determined to bring out the intellectual works and resources and render them in languages that would allow the great majority to access them.

He said the conference should also help unearth northern heritage and make it available to the world.

The Chairman of the conference, former Vice Chancellor of Adamawa State University, Prof. Al Kasum Abba, said there was nothing more important than scholarship as no organisation could be run on ignorance.

“It’s great that this conference is taking place on Islamic Learning and Scholarship in Africa. People don’t recognise that long before English came there was learning in Islam.

The professor of history said: “Going into the history of Islamic education in Africa is very important.

“The Sokoto jihad was a social movement but the British came and called it Fulani jihad because they wanted to establish their own.

“We have not been studying, projecting the Islamic scholarship the way it should be projected.

“The Sultan of Sokoto and Shehu of Borno should help in establishing fund to study the 19th century jihad because it took different dimensions for the jihads in Sokoto and Borno.

“We equally need funds to translate all the writings of 19th century so that we understand the history of our society.”

On his part, VC Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Prof. Kabiru Bala, said the subject formed the bedrock of Islam and Islamic civilisation, learning and scholarship.

He also said ABU as an educational institution, was praud to be associated with the programme.

He said the gathering would explore the history and the development of Islamic learning and scholarship in Africa while bringing to the fore, its contributions to the life of the people and challenges confronting scholarship and Islamic learning today.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the conference was attended by Islamic scholars, researchers, and experts from various parts of Africa and the world.

Among the dignitaries are the Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Umar Garbai el-Kanemi; the Deputy Governor of Kano state, Alhaji Aminu Gwarzo, who represented Governor Abba Yusuf and Dr Usman Bugaje, the Director-General IRCICA.

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