As the holy month of Ramadan, a month of spiritual rewards (thawab) for fasting, a period of increased offering of salat (prayers), recitation of the Quran and an increase of doing good deeds and charity, winds up, Ankeli Emmanuel (Sokoto), Umar Mohammed Gusau (Zamfara), YAHYA SARKI (Kebbi), ISAIAH BENJAMIN, (KADUNA) and ANDY OSEMOTA (KATSINA), take a look at the attention given to the needy.
In line with the tradition of assisting the less privileged, especially within the Ramadan periods, the Sokoto State government says it has spent not less than N2.7bn through the Zakkat and Endowment Commission for various empowerment activities in the last three years.
Making the disclosure during this year’s flag off ceremony of the distribution of 9,100 bags of assorted grains, and fabrics materials to the needy in 86 districts of the 23 local government areas of the state, Governor Aminu Tambuwal vowed to sustain such assistance. The governor further distributed a total of 172 bicycles to both male and female orphans across the 23 local governments.
Tambuwal, who reminded all Muslim Ummah of the need to see the period as yet another privilege to meaningfully affect the lives of the needy, advised that it should be characterized with devotion, tolerance, good deeds and acts of charity.
While stressing that his government is mindful of the needs of the less privileged, Tambuwal noted that such support will go a long way in promoting their socio-economic capacity for prosperity.
Speaking on how committed he is towards providing basic amenities for the people of the state, Tambuwal commended the Zakkat Commission for exhibiting such prudence.
He said: “It is our duty to commit state resources for the benefit of humanity and we therefore, urge all and sundry to support and extend the necessary cooperation to the state government to do more”
On his part, the chairman, Sokoto State Zakkat and Endowment Commission, Mallam Lawal Maidoki said they paid 48.8m every month as allowances to the destitute within the last two years. He added that, over 7,000 needy persons have so far benefited from a total of N1.630 bn paid as monthly allowance in the last two years.
Madaki said: “We have provided health and welfare services to 100 patents including 29,000 mentally derailed and empowered 16, 000. This is the only state that runs and sustains this kind of programme in Nigeria.”
Commissioner for Religious Affairs, Hon. Abdullahi Maigwandu said Sokoto State 2018 Ramadan feeding activities have been reviewed upward to gulp N300 million throughout the period.
According to Maigwandu: “We have earmarked and located 111 feeding centres across the state metropolis and environs at the feeding cost of N10m daily.”
The Zamfara State deputy governor, Malam Ibrahim Wakala has donated clothing materials to over 10,000 less privileged persons.
Performing the distribution ceremony, Malam Wakala said the gesture was to reduce hardship among the less privileged people during Sallah.
He therefore appealed to well to do individuals in the state to doll out their wealth to the poor people, especially, orphans and widows.
The deputy governor called on the beneficiaries of the materials to use them judiciously and not to sell them.
One of the beneficiaries, a 65 -year -old woman, Basira Gadar Baga, commended the deputy governor for his gesture to peasants, saying the gesture given to her and her four children will go a long way in boosting their morale during the upcoming Sallah celebration.
She appealed to other wealthy individuals in the state to emulate the deputy governor’s gesture with a view to reducing hardship among poor people in the state.
In the spirit of Ramadan the Jamaatu Izalatul Bid’a Wa ikamatul Sunnah (JIBWIS) , in Kebbi State, has distributed food items worth N2 million to 1,200 orphans in Gwandu local government area of the state.
The chairman, committee of the distribution of the items in the area, Imam Muhammad Yabani, made this known to LEADERSHIP Weekend in Gwandu during the distribution of the items to the orphans.
According to him, the items distributed included: 56 bags of rice, 55 bags of millet and two bags of maize, among others. Yabani said the gesture was aimed at bringing succour to the lives of the orphans. He prayed Allah to reward those who contributed to the success of the event. The orphans also received clothing materials as well as money in cash from the committee.
Also speaking, Malam Siddiku Sani, the JIBWIS chairman of Gwandu Local Government Area, commended the committee for impacting positively on the lives of the orphans in the area. He also called on well-to- do individuals and philanthropists to use their wealth in improving the lives of the orphans and vulnerable.
Similarly, the State Social Welfare Fund has distributed relief materials worth over #50 million naira to persons with disability and destitute across the 21 local government areas of the state.
In Gwandu and Dandi Local Government areas of the State, over 400 persons with disability were given N10, 000 which was approved by the State government. The Chairman of Gwandu and Dandi Local Government Areas, Alhaji Shehu Bagudu Dalijan and Alhaji Garba Salihu Dila respectively gave out the donations to the leaders of persons with disability and their members.
The Executive Secretary Social Security Welfare Fund, Alhaji Nasiru Shehu Gwandu said the relief materials were solely meant for disables and destitute across the state, so that they will feel a sense of belonging.
The State governor, Senator Abubakar Atiku Bagudu has also approved release of grains to civil servants in the state, the chief press Secretary to the governor, Alhaji Abubakar Muazu Dakingari confirmed this to Leadership. According to him “Yes the governor has already approved the release of grains especially rice to the civil servants in the state. Even staff of government house are not left behind”, he said.
The rich and the well to do in the society were equally not left out in the charity at this crucial period of the month. One of such kindness was the donations by Alhaji Faruk Musa ( Enabo), an aide to the governor to Izala Mosque in Birnin Kebbi. He donated 100 Atampa wrappers, 100 Shadda clothes and over 100 bags of assorted grains ranging from rice to millet for onward distribution to the needy and orphans.
Since the coming on board of the Governor Nasir el-Rufai-led administration in 2015, the hitherto feeding of the needy and less privileged Muslims during the Ramadan period was stopped.
Although the stoppage was greeted with various criticisms, it has however come to stay. But other spirited individuals in their personal capacities have continued to render such assistance.
Notably, the senator representing Kaduna central, Senator Shehu Sani and former Kaduna North Local Government Council chairman and senatorial aspirant for the 2019 elections, Honourable Usman Ibrahim (Sardauna Badarawa) have also stretched their hands of assistance both in food and cash to the needy in the state in the spirit of the Ramadan season.
Also in the same spirit, Honourable Ibrahim has sponsored some Muslim faithfuls to the lesser Hajj (Umrah). To foster religious harmony during Ramadan, the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) Church Lemu Road, has also donated food items such as maize, millet, sugar, indomie, beans, maggi to Muslims within their domain.
Pastor Yuhanna Buru in his usual annual characteristics during the holy month of Ramadan, also gave food to the needy. Some other spirited individuals who prefer anonymity also visited some Mosque during the breaking of the fast in the evenings with packaged food and drinks which they distributed same among the beggars that normally stay within such premise.
In this holy month of Ramadan fasting like all other previous years wealthy people and other well to do in Jigawa have demonstrated a high sense of brotherhood, humanity and concerned by given out assistance (sadakat) in cash and kind to the neediest.
The economic hardship in the country did not deter people from assisting one another rather it encourage them to give out according to their abilities for humanity and eternal rewards.
It is observed that, the fasting had made every Muslim faithful to test the agony of hunger and thirst regardless of his economic and social status. This lesson is what might have prompt people at individual and official level not to be hesitant to donate to the needy.
At the official level, the state government had procured food stuffs and distributed it to different categories of peoples. Similarly all the 27 local government area of the state had replicate similar gesture.
At individual level wealthy people, electives and political appointees were reported to have shared food items, cloth and money to the neediest, friends, brothers and political allies.
During this Ramadan, many joints were opened by individuals and group of people where cocked foods are distribute to travellers and any interested person during fasting breaking hours.
Even the neediest themselves they often buy date, pure water and other affordable items and share it to others particularly in the evening time.
Mosques, Emirs palaces, schools and learning centres are also among the common places where such cocked food can be accessed in daily basis across Jigawa state.
Due to the virtues of the holy month of Ramadan many wealthy people in the state chose it for their annual Zakkat (arms) calendar. The compulsory Zakkat paid by wealthy people and other assistant (Sadakat) had combined made Ramadan fasting to the neediest across Jigawa very easy despite the economic hardship.
Since the month of Ramadan began, several individuals and groups across Katsina State have bowed to their Islamic injunction to assist less privileged persons in their midst with food items and cash donations to enable them observe the one month long compulsory fast by Muslims the world over.
The benevolence of Governor Aminu Bello Masari and other key stakeholders in the state has provided the much needed succour for many of the less-privileged.
The passion of Governor Masari and other philanthropists will no doubt remain indelible in the hearts of the beneficiaries who smile home with assorted food items and some cash during this Ramadan.
The governor underlined the determination of his administration to alleviate the hardship of the poor by providing thousands of bags of millet, rice, maize and sugar for distribution to them this Ramadan, according to Katsina Zonal APC vice chairman, Alhaji Mamman Yaro Batsari.
Flagging off the distribution of the commodities to ward executives of the ruling party for onward distribution to the needy in the zone comprising no fewer than 11 local government areas, Batsari said the poor in each of the 361 political wards across the state will benefit from the initiative.
He charged the party officials to be fair and just in the distribution while calling on other well meaning individuals and organizations to complement the gesture. Similarly, the wives of the state governor have also donated food items, clothes and cash assistance to orphans and widows as part of their efforts to assist the less privileged Muslims in the holy month. In Katsina South Senatorial zone, the Yeoman’s effort of Senator Abu Ibrahim has remained a constant factor for many during Ramadan.
At the inception of the month, the law maker donated food items worth N33.5 million to enable many of his constituents to realize their dreams of getting the vital necessity of life. In the same breathe, his counterpart in Katsina Central Senatorial zone, Senator Umar Ibrahim Kurfi, also reportedly provided Ramadan package worth about N30 million food items for his constituents to observe the Ramadan fast with relative ease. Unfortunately, the needy in Katsina North Senatorial Zone did not get such mouth watering assistance following the demise of Senator Mustapha Bukar.
One of the affected persons, Hadiza Sa’ad and resident of Daura, lamented that the poor in that zone were yearning for the public spirited leader that would step into the big shoes of late Senator Bukar and lend a helping hand to them as much as possible. Barely a week ago, the state branch of JIBIWIS, an Islamic religious sect, launched a multi-milllion Naira appeal fund to assist the less privileged across the state, having spent about N45 million on same philanthropic project during last Ramadan.
“The assistance of Muslim Ummah is reversing the deprivation and lack my family and I have known for months,” said Rukayyat Aliyu of Tundun El-hida quarters in Katsina metropolis.
The widow, who lamented that mealtime for her family was merely when food was available, however noted that some well meaning persons have been assisting her family with food items to break their fast at sun set and eat again before dawn. “I will welcome more support in my struggle against poverty and shame of begging for food,” said Aliyu as she implored that more well to do persons should get involved in the act of helping the needy not only during Ramadan but those who have fallen into economic hardship.
Dahiru Abba, a teacher in Katsina added: “Many people cannot fend for themselves now-a-days; they are looking up to the majority who are more endowed in the society to bail them out now more than ever before.
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