Samuel Luka, Bauchi
As the world marks the International Day of Girl-Child, a Non-Governmental organization, Pastoral Resolve (PARE) has appealed to the governments at various levels in Nigeria to facilitate free primary and secondary education for girls.
The Programme Manager of the NGO in Bauchi state, Mr. Shuaibu Aliyu Kobi who made the plea in a press release on Wednesday, urged the governments to make additional provisions for girls to enable them pass through primary and secondary schools free of charge.
Mr. Kobi further urged the authorities to provide busses for transporting the girl-child as well as some stipends to make their educational pursuance attractive.
According to him, girls have been marginalized for years and have been undergoing excruciating hardships in developing countries unlike their counterparts in Western side of the world.
“Nigeria is not an exception, as there are cases of gender bias where girls are receiving less when compared with boys”, the NGO observed.
Mr. Kobi who said the PARE which has been operating for decades, has championed seminars, orientation campaigns and visits to hard-to reach rural areas, enlightening households on the relevance of educating, uplifting and promoting girl-child to make them actualize their dreams.
“Every year, the International Day of Girl Child is celebrated on October 11 with the primary aim of empowering girls and amplifying their collective voice across the globe”, he said.
He pointed out that the United Nations International Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF) has over the years, organized events to promote the power and potential of girls.
“Despite the restriction of most of the activities of PARE to majorly Shira and Gamawa LGAs, its campaigns in the media has enlightened the public on the dangers of female gentile mutilation that has dominated traditional practices, trained parents on balance diet, equal access to education, health and other sectors”, Mr. Kobi explained.
He said that the PARE has succeeded in distributing free reading and writing materials to pupils and conducted training to parents on different skills, among others that have indirect positive impact on the children.
Mr. Kobi said however that, over the past 10 years, improvement have been recorded as more attentions were drawn to issues such as girls working as maids, cases of rape and child trafficking to foreign countries.
The programme manager who enjoined stakeholders to put more resources together in actualizing the ambitions of girls, pointed out that, by doing so, many girls would be rescued from the shackles of backwardness and other societal challenges.