Oyo State Government has reiterated its commitment and willingness to promote and protect the rights and privileges of all children, especially, the education of the girl-child for sustainable development.
The state commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Inclusion, Alhaja Faosat Sanni, stated this during year 2020 virtual National Children’s Day celebration held at the Ministry’s conference room, Secretariat, Ibadan.
Speaking on the theme for the year: ” Promoting Girl Child Education For Sustainable Development,” the commissioner noted that the education of the girl-child is a vital tool for national development, hence, the need for more girls to be involved in education, child welfare and poverty reduction, stressing that education not only promotes development but also ensures that development attained is sustained.
“In many societies, there are numerous issues that prevent a girl – child from fulfilling her rights to an education which ranges from her gender to her economic condition and to our cultural beliefs .
“We are also faced with many challenges such as rape, child trafficking, defilement, child marriage, teenage pregnancy, female genital mutilation and many more.
“There are stigmas attached to the education of women and girls and as a result, untapped human potentials and gender equality are prominent even as sex trafficking, child marriage and forced prostitution can become the sad alternative to an education, ” she said.
Sanni, therefore, assured that the state government would continue to support all policies that would promote the rights and privileges of Oyo State children in the right course.
Earlier in her welcome address, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Inclusion, Mrs Christiana Abioye, said girl- child education is an essential tool to promote family and societal growth, discipline, development and progress of the society affirming that no society can survive without the active participation of women and girl child.
The Permanent Secretary charged them to stand up for their rights and speak out as the present administration ably led by Governor Seyi Makinde is very sensitive to the issues of children.
While wishing them happy celebration, she appealed to all stakeholders to keep observing all the precautionary measures as laid down by health professionals to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the society. In his goodwill message, a stakeholder & private orphanage home operator, Pastor Marcus Williams, lauded the efforts of the state government in rescuing teenage girls form all forms of gender based violence by giving them assurance and hope for survival.
Sofia Bankole, a girl – child, who spoke on behalf of the children thanked Governor Seyi Makinde for giving all children in the state free education and textbooks.