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CSOs Task Zamfara State Govt On Safety In Schools

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Two frontline Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), Connected Development [CODE] and YouthHubAfrica have urged the Zamfara State Government to re-strategise its security infrastructure to ensure safety in schools across the state.

For over four months, schools all across Zamfara State were shut down, making any form of learning impossible and exposing children to varying degrees of exploitation and violence.

Prior to school closure, according to a statement by CODE’s Communication Associate, Seun Durojaiye, school children in the state were exposed to varying degrees of insecurity and violence, thereby inhibiting all forms of learning

CODE and YouthHubAfrica with the support from Malala Fund, had earlier expressed worry at the increasing spate of mass abductions carried out by acclaimed bandits in Northern Nigeria. The CSOs have continued to advocate for policy reforms to improve the girl child’s access to basic education in all states, including Zamfara.

The need to ensure safer spaces for learning is underscored by the recent resolve by the government of Zamfara State to reopen schools, thereby activating hope as 2022 academic session kicks off in full gear.

The CSOs have therefore applauded the Zamfara State Government for demonstrating its commitment to see that children, especially girls have access to education by reopening the schools.

The group however noted that while the reopening of schools is a step in the right direction, it is important to highlight factors including insecurity and the COVID-19 pandemic responsible for the setback in Nigeria’s education system. Its effect on schools across the country is glaring.

While stressing the need for safe learning, the Chief Executive of CODE, Hamzat Lawal, said schools are meant to be safe places for children to learn and prepare them for the future.

“In recent times schools in Nigeria have been soft targets for perpetrators of violence, this should not be the case. Our approach has been to advocate for policy reforms and implementation that would improve access to education funds by state governments, ensure 12 years of free, safe and quality education for every Nigerian child through the amendment of the Universal Basic Education Act”, he said.

Similarly, the Executive Director of YouthHubAfrica,  Rotimi Olawale implores the government, citizens and education stakeholders to ensure that access to education is not negotiable.

“Every day education activists take small but important steps to break down barriers preventing girls from completing their education”, he added.

Short URL: https://www.africanexaminer.com/?p=73022

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