Education for girls around the world has taken a front burner in most countries.
This is no different for Nigerian especially for some FCT girls who have become bread winners for their families having been married out at an early.
School for them may be a thing of the past in a country that has not taken education seriously judging from its budgetary allocation to education every year.
GIRL CHILD EDUCATION
Currently, there are roughly 180 million people in Nigeria. And by 2017 the number is expected to double. Out of this number about 80 million are females including the number of girls in the FCT who are out of school, and have become petty traders in and around the Federal Capital territory.
Hafsat Adamu is one of them. At seventeen years, she says she does not have any form of education. Even though she thinks education is a good thing, marrying at an early age has erased the thought of getting a good education making her one of the number amongst other girls who are out of school without any form of education.
Here’s what she said.
“My name is Hafsat Adamu, I am seventeen years old. I’m from Kaduna State. I want to go to school, but there is no money to further my education. I’m currently married with children .My ambition is to become a medical doctor but I can’t fulfill that dream, because of the harsh economic realities on ground. I also got married at an early age’’.
“Aisha Mohammed is from kastina State, but she resides in the FCT with an aunt who is a trader.
She shared her own plight.’’
“My name is Aisha Mohammed I also got married at an early age. I’m sixteen years and don’t have any interest in education because I got married at an early age. Even though I think school is good, I just can’t get education because am married and would want to cater for my children.”
“Same here for blessing who have only completed a primary six education.
My name is blessing. I’d like to go further my education, I just finished primary six. I know education is good. Education is also life. I am fifteen years. I want to go to secondary school, but I can’t. Right now am staying with my aunty who sells food. I help her with the selling. She sells pounded yam, porridge yam, and rice. I really want to go to school and don’t want to get married.
They are among over 10 million Nigerian children estimated by the United Nations (UN) to be out of school. Among these figures are numerous children in Madalla, Takushara, Unguwar Mahmuda and Wassa communities in the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC).
Former Minister of Women affairs Josephine Anenih says Gender discrimination must stop in a society that sees women as having nothing to offer.
She stated this in a telephone interview with Hot 98.3 Fm.
“What is the society doing .The society needs to be more educated, the society needs to internalize the freedom and allow the women enjoy these right that the constitution guarantees women.”
She added that parents must take responsibility to raise their children dispelling tradition that speaks nothing of good education.
“I will give thanks to my late father. When I was a child, he made me release that there was nothing I set my heart to do that I couldn’t do. He had all the girls at the beginning, and he sent me to primary school. He also taught me at home and encouraged me. I knew that there was nothing I set my mind to, that I couldn’t do.”
With the gender equality bill having passed second reading, Anineh stressed that the Federal Government must do all it can to ensure it gets a speedy passage while also raising the budgetary allocation for education in Nigeria.
In Abuja I’m Chioma Tamunobubelebara reporting for Hot 98.3fm.