The Embassy of the United States of America in Nigeria, in partnership with a community based organization, Mufarka Youth Development Initiative, hosted an Iftar dinner for Almajiri and orphan children to mark the end of a day of fasting by the Muslim faithful in the Holy month of Ramadan Tuesday, in Kano, northwestern Nigeria.
Speaking to newsmen shortly after the Iftar dinner, Laurence Socha, a public diplomacy officer at the US mission in Abuja, said the idea for the Iftar was to celebrate “our common humanity” with Muslims adding that the Embassy was following on the example of the President of the United States, Barack Obama, who had a week earlier hosted a similar dinner in Washington.
“Celebrating the Iftar with our Muslim friends tonight in Kano is a celebration of our common humanity,” said Socha “America has over 3 million Muslims and thousands of mosques so tonight we celebrate the freedom of religion, which is so important to our country.”
Also speaking to journalists after the event, Nura Ahmad, the project director of Mufarka Youth Development Initiative said the idea behind the Iftar for Almajiris and orphan children was to give them a sense of belonging and part of Mufarka’s peace campaign working youth to discourage them from engaging in violent activities.
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Sadisu Salisu, an almajiri boy who spoke to African Newspage said he felt honored to be invited to participate at the Iftar dinner calling on the need for Almajiri school system to be reformed.
“I and other Almajiris feel honored to be invited to this Iftar dinner, which is the second of its kind being organized by Mufarka. Almajiris are human like every other persons however there is need for the system to be reformed, for example, children below 14 years of age should not be sent to Almajiri School,” said Sadisu
The Iftar is the evening meal after sunset that concludes the daily fasting during the month of Ramadan by the over a billion followers of the Islamic faith all over the world.