Olanrewaju Lawal, Birnin Kebbi
Nigeria Minister of Women Affairs, Mrs Dame Pauline K Tallen, has disclosed that Nigeria are losing N967 billion to violence against children which was equivalent to 1.07% Nigeria’s GDP.
The Minister, who stated this on Saturday in Birnin Kebbi, Kebbi State, during a zonal sensitisation on ending violence against children and promoting Girl- Child education in Nigeria, noted that about 60 percentage of 13.5 million Nigerian children who are out schools are girls.
Tallen, represented by Director Child Development at the Ministry, Hajia Jumai Muhammad, said: ‘The study conducted in 2014, revealed that on the national average, 6 out of 10 children suffer from one form of violence or the other.
‘This study also showed that violence against takes place in the home, on the streets, market places, in schools, at work places, in the community and child care institutions. It is often perpetrated by family members’ domestic staff and caregivers that ste expected to protect the children from all forms of abuses and exploitation.
‘Furthermore, the study conducted in 2019 on the economic burden on Violence Against Children survey of children revealed a magnitude of losses indicating cumulative loss of earning as a result of productivity losses across different types of violence against children was 967 billion naira,accounting to 1.07% Nigeria’s GDP.’
She added that recent figure released by UNICEF also ranked Nigeria as one of the highest in child brides nation, second to India.
‘In order to address the challenges militating against the survival and development of our dear children, His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari launched the campaign to end violence against children in 2015 and recently, approved the establishment of Gender Based Violence Committee with mandate to ensure that all forms of violence are brought to barest minimum in our society.’
In her remark, the Special Adviser to Kebbi State Governor on Women and Social Development, Hon Zahra’u Abubakar Wali said the state government had recorded a lot of achievement and progress on child rights and protection.
‘So much has been accomplished, but there is still so much fuel in our tank and even ad achieving a society ridden of violence against persons and violence again children seems like a bridge too far.
‘Our commitment is greater than our fear,our hope outweighs our weaknesses, and our passion overshadows their might. While there is seemingly the inevitability of a few determined apostles of these cruel acts, today’s action sends a clear message to them, that the higher they build their barriers, the talker we shall becom.’
The Permanent Secretary, Kebbi State Ministry of Women Affairs, Hajia Aishatu Maikurata, in her welcome address, urged parents and other stakeholders to protect the rights of children, stressed that the future of the country evolve around them.