Participants at the ongoing three-day capacity building workshop for media executives in Kaduna have agreed with Christian Aid Nigeria (CAID_Nigeria) that, educating a girl-child in northern Nigeria is a surval strategy for the region which must be given proper attention by all.
“Here in the North due to various reasons, we want female doctors to examine our wives, sisters, daughters and mothers. We want female teachers to teach them and even if possible, we want female professional drivers to drive them around”, a participant said during the training.
But most of these requests can only happen when parents, policymakers and girls themselves agree to acquire both religion and western education at least up to the level they can effectively and confidently offer these services and many others.
The training, which is championed by CAID_Nigeria in collaboration with Development Communications (DEVCOMS) Network is premised on the Collective Action for Adolescent Girls Initiative (CAAGI) and Voice to the People (V2P) projects in Kaduna state.
In a presentation, Blessing Okeke of CAID_Nigeria reminded the participants the shocking number of women who are stack illiterate in sub-Sahara Africa which Nigeria topping that list while northern Nigeria contributed the highest percent of that rate in 7 digit figures.
Already, inadequate or lack of secondary schools at some rural communities pose a big threat to education of a girl-child in such communities.
When a parent for instance, after their daughter finishes from community primary school and have to think about the security risk involve in sending her to secondary school in remote location may end up asking her to stay at home, hawk within the community to support family’s economy and then married-off at very tender age and the poverty trend and other risks will continue.
That means a girl-child living in towns and cities have greater opportunity to be in school than her counterparts in the villages.
This single barrier has contributed to a situation whereby one out of every three women in Northwest Nigeria for instance attend primary school which has added up to illiteracy rate among women in Nigeria with Kaduna having between 35-50 percent women illiteracy rate.
It was against that shocking revelation that, CAAGI and V2P projects were launched in Kaduna to see how they can help the people to understand the importance of girl-child education and then make their voice heard on barriers limiting them and how to overcome such identified barriers collectively in their own interest and that of coming generations. (Stay in touch for more reports on girl-child education in Nigeria)
SOLA OJO sent in this report 29-08-2018-Tuesday