The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has revealed that over 50 percent of girls in Nigeria are not receiving basic education, as disclosed by Jutaro Sakamoto, the Education Manager at UNICEF, during an education conference organized by the French Institute in Nigeria in Abuja,Daily Trust reports.
Sakamoto highlighted that a staggering 7.6 million girls in Nigeria are currently not enrolled in school. This figure includes 3.9 million girls at the primary level and 3.7 million at the junior secondary level.
He further noted that 48 percent of these out-of-school girls are concentrated in the North West and North East regions. Additionally, he pointed out that gender parity in the net attendance ratio remains below 1.0 in 10 states, primarily in the Northern part of the country, although it is improving in 15 states.
Sakamoto shared a troubling statistic, stating that only 9 percent of the poorest girls have access to secondary education, while 81 percent from the richest quintile enjoy this privilege.
Expressing concern about Nigeria’s contribution to the global out-of-school children problem, Sakamoto remarked, “If we can’t address the situation in Nigeria, we can’t solve the situation in the world.”
He also emphasized that even those attending school in Nigeria are not receiving adequate education due to a lack of essential facilities. However, he mentioned that UNICEF’s Education Opportunity for Out of School Children (OOSC) project has made some positive impact in addressing these challenges.