“13.2 million Nigerian children are out of school” – UBEC

The Universal Basic Education Commission UBEC have revealed 13.2 million Nigerian children are out of school, up from 10.5 million.

UBEC Executive Secretary, Dr Hammid Bobboyi, made this known in Abuja on Thursday during a United Nations Children’s Fund briefing on out-of-school children.

Bello Kaigara, who was representing the Secretary said: “Over the last few years, Nigeria has been besieged by the Boko Haram and lots of children have been put out of school. If you add the number of children that have been displaced and the increasing number of births, you find out that our source in DHS conducted by UNICEF published in 2015 reveals that the number of out-of-school children has increased to 13.2 million. This is equally affecting the implementation of some education treaties that Nigeria is a signatory to.”

With many of them children from the Northern part of the country, UNICEF has said it is partnering with over 200 traditional rulers in the region in a bid to find a solution to the problem.

The UNICEF Chief of Education, Terry Durnnian, said the growing out-of-school population called for “serious concern and Nigeria should take on the challenge of reducing the number”, noting that UNICEF would support the process.

In a release on Thursday by Azuka Menkiti and Geoffrey Njoku, the body revealed the Northern Nigeria Traditional Rulers Conference in Kaduna State aims to bring together the Emirs to discuss solutions.

“In a two-day conference, stakeholders from the two critical zones in northern Nigeria – North-West and North-East – key traditional rulers and religious leaders will brainstorm on the obstacles to getting the children in school and decide on actions to be taken.

“A final Agenda for Action will be endorsed by the two chairmen of the conference – the Sultan of Sokoto and the Shehu of Borno. Each of the participating emirs will sign a Commitment for Action,” the release partly reads.

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