Allamin Foundation for Peace and Development, a Non-governmental Organisation (NGO) based in Maiduguri, had on Sunday launched a book, ‘Boko Halal’, that contains basic guide and teaching modules on how to prevent and counter toxic narratives in Quranic schools in Borno state.
Written in English and two other local languages ‘Boko Halal’ which means western education is not forbidden, represents a direct contrast to the Boko Haram ideology.
Hajia Hamsatu Allamin, the Executive Director of Allamim Foundation for Peace, said Boko Halal was an idea she initiated some years ago as a way of curbing the false narratives about Islam which fuels the crisis in the Lake Chad region.
‘Boko Halal’ come as a 160 paged book with 10 chapters. Reviewers said the book is a well thought out manual of peace education that promotes tolerance, peaceful coexistence, and encourages the establishment of peace clubs in Islamic schools.
Ms Allamin said she “initiated the idea of developing this modular manual to demystify this narrative of Boko Haram, to Boko Halal, thus challenging the narratives of extremism in our society.”
The book was first developed in 2016 and reviewed by the foundation in partnership with Makeiyya Association, with funding support from International Civil Society Action Network (ICAN) under its Inclusive Peace Fund (IPF).
And that the main target of the boom are younger children who can easily be misguided if not guided In the right path with relevant knowledge and information.
Ms Allamin added that the book would be distributed “to 20 selected Islamic schools within Maiduguri Metropolitan Council and Jere local government.
“Of each of the 20 schools we have selected five teachers that have been trained in peacebuilding, and are going to support them to set up peace clubs in their Islamiyya were 50 pupils, would-be members,” she said.
“At the end of the day, the 1000 pupils could also be advocates of Boko Halal by stepping down the knowledge gained from the teachings of peace in their various clubs,”
Borno State Primary Education Board was represented at the event promised to see the possibility of adopting the books and making it part of the instructional modules for peace in the state.
“This is a welcome development and we will look into it to see how the government can partner with the foundation to mass-produce it for a wider usage even in our conventional schools,” Dr Kullima, the executive secretary of Borno State Primary Education Board.
Dr Abba Bukar, who chaired the book review committee said the contents of Boko Halal were sourced from several research works, acclaimed teachings extractions from the holy Quran and Hadith, where the issues of peace, tolerance, and pure religious living were mentioned.
Highlight of the event was launching of the book and public presentation of same to the 20 selected schools. A separate instructional guide was also given to the 100 trained teachers that would be coordinating the peace clubs.
Allamin Foundation has also provided COVID-19 safety kits for the 20 selected Islamiyya for use at the peace clubs.
Borno State government has recently prohibited unlicenced public preaching, as a town hall meeting on security fingered the same as the cause of Boko Haram.