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President: Quality education for all children

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By Usman Oladimeji

Providing quality education to all children creates a brighter future.

The Nigerian president, Bola Ahmed Tinubu have promised to ensure that every Nigerian child has access to a good education. He also advocated for initiatives to address the systemic barriers that prevent women in Africa from advancing. Tinubu made these remarks at the inauguration ceremony of the Organisation of African First Ladies for Development #Weareequal campaign. The president acknowledges that the campaign has been effectively rolled out in 15 African nations, with a focus on improving health, education, economic empowerment, and addressing gender-based violence.

Ensuring equal opportunities for education is crucial for Africa’s growth and development. The campaign ‘Education as a Powerful Tool for Change’ launched in Nigeria highlights the importance of gender equity and inclusivity in education. It is essential to provide quality education to all children, especially girls, to create a brighter future for the continent. Let’s work towards guaranteeing access to education for every child, leaving no one behind, he said. It is imperative to create a society that offers equal opportunities to all individuals, irrespective of their background, as this paves the way for a more united and harmonious community.

More schools are reportedly to be in progress across Nigeria.

Moreover, the implementation of this commendable initiative in Nigeria marked the return of the “Alternative High School for Girls” program by the First Lady. Through this campaign, young girls who have left school have an opportunity to continue their education and pursue their goals and ambitions. Tinubu said it was a moment of excitement for him to witness the laying of the foundation stone for a new school in Osun State, Nigeria. Additional schools are reportedly to be in progress across Nigeria, with funding coming from state governments, the federal government via UBEC, and various partners involved in development projects.

During his time as governor of Lagos State, the president said he observed the negative impact of social issues like teenage pregnancy, domestic violence, human trafficking, and drug addiction on the futures of young girls. This likely influenced the First Lady’s decision to bring back an Alternative High School program for girls, drawing from the success of a similar initiative in Lagos State under the president’s leadership. Findings from various studies consistently point to education as the key factor for driving national progress. Supporting girls to pursue their aspirations leads to flourishing communities, thriving economies, and successful nations.

Awareness must be raised on empowering women and girls.

Thus, it is essential for us all to persist in taking courageous and definitive steps to eradicate the systemic barriers that hinder the progress of women and education in Africa. Awareness must be raised regarding the pivotal role of empowering women and girls in attaining the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. It is crucial that we collaborate in advocating for legislation and regulations that safeguard and advance the rights of women, prioritize the education and skill enhancement of girls, and establish inclusive economic prospects for everyone.

To reach our aspirations in Nigeria, it is crucial to fully implement the Student’s Loan Act. This will guarantee that every young individual can easily pursue education. Additionally, the Nigerian government, under the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, has rolled out a ₦50,000 non-repayable grant program for one million Nigerians in Nano businesses and skilled trades, with a focus on women and youth. Tinubu further promises to prioritize the eradication of gender-based violence and the enhancement of educational opportunities for girls in secure and supportive environment.

Related Article: Key educational sector’s issues under Tinubu

Implementing these strategies will create pathways for women to excel in various fields, ranging from politics to engineering, science, technology, sports, and the creative economy. Tinubu praised the African First Ladies for their #WeareEqual initiative, stressing the importance of mentorship programs to empower young girls to embrace their cultural heritage with confidence. He restated his dedication to guaranteeing that every child in Nigeria has access to high-quality education that empowers women and girls to take on leadership roles and make a positive impact on our society.

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