Muhammad Sanusi, emir of Kano, says fathers who send out their children to beg for alms should be arrested.
Sanusi spoke on Thursday at a conference Future Assured Initiative, the non-governmental organisation of Aisha Buhari, the first lady, organised in collaboration with the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA)
The emir said no law provides that a man should marry, have children and abandon them without living up to his responsibility to them.
He said any man who is too poor to take care of his family should go out and beg by himself, and not send his children.
“Every day, wives are complaining about their husbands who claim their rights but abandon their responsibilities of marriage, women being divorced with their husbands not taking care of the children and those children ending up on the streets, drugs, political thuggery, violent extremism,” he said.
“No law that talks about consent in marriage, the rights of wives and husbands, domestic violence , rights of women divorced , the responsibilities of husbands under divorce situations, if a child is found on the streets, is the father that is responsible and can the state hold him accountable?
“Do you just marry and have children without any responsibilities? The reason Allah send His Prophets is that there should be justice in this world. Justice in our relationship with our maker and in our relationship with our fellow human beings.
“Justice means that everyone is given his rights. If a man takes the privilege of being the head of the family, he takes the responsibilities of being the provider of the family. You cannot take that privilege and abandon the responsibilities.
“Is it a fact that a father has the right to force his daughter into a loveless marriage? That you have the rights to batter you wife? You have the right to have children and push them to the streets to beg? That when you divorce your wife, you ask her and her children to pack and go back to her father’s house and that is the end?
“I can spend 100 years saying that it is wrong and un-Islamic for a man to beat his wife, but it is the Governor and the state house of assembly that should pass the law, it is the courts and the police that will make sure that the woman gets justice. The Scholars and Emirs cannot do that.
“So, the problem is these groups of human beings are those who will stand to answer to Allah if there is no justice.
“The traditional and religious leaders have an obligation to ask for justice, but those with the political powers have an obligation to put in place the processes that will make sure that these justices are complied with.”