By Oduyemi Odumade
The Federal Government has been urged to be proactive in addressing insecurity in schools which is adding to the menace of out of school children in the country.
Member Representating Osun Ede/Egbedore/Ejigbo Federal Constituency in Osun State, Mr Bamidele Salam stated this in his remarks at the National Children Leadership Conference to mark this year’s 2023 Universal Children’s day in Abuja.
The event with the theme: Rebuilding Nigeria Through Investment In Children’s Education, Welfare and Security was Organised by a Non Governmental Organization, Children of Africa Leadership and Values Development Initative, CALDEV.
The member who is also the Convener of the Conference decried the high rate of out of school children in Nigeria due to attacks by bandits Insurgents and other elements with Nigeria having 13.5million children.
The Chairman House of Representives Commitee on Public Accounts, explained that the conference was Organised to impart leadership skills in children and also teach them on the need to embrace the diversity of culture, religion and ethnicity in the country.
“One of the very important issues this conference is set out to address is the issue of Out-Of-School Children. It is not a cheering news that Africa’s largest economy, the biggest nation in the black world has a number of Out-Of-School Children that is the most in all the countries of the world, 13.5 million children out of school.
“No nation can expect to accelerate development and growth with this number of children out of school, and we should be able to proffer solutions to this problem in a manner that will be sustainable to ensure that all stakeholders, government, civil societies communities, religious bodies, put hands together to make sure that we take off the children from the streets from begging, from roaming about the streets and to the school.
Because lack of access to education is the major cause of poverty and underdevelopment in any country of the world.
“The children are also asking that a minimum of 15% of our national budget should be committed to education.
Earlier, during a Mock Children’s Parliamentary Session, Sponsored by the National Institute for Legislative and democratic Studies (NILDS), the mover of the motion of urgent Public Importance on the need to address Insecurity, improve the welfare and increase access to education of the Nigerian Child, Mr. Jonathan Olaosebikan, urged the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency on education in Nigeria.
He also urged the Federal Government to mandate the Federal Ministry of Education and other relevant agencies to allocate 15 percent of their annual budget to the welfare, education, security and protection of the rights of children in Nigeria.
Speaker of the Mock Parliament session, Ibrahim Zanna Sunoma after entertaining varying views over the issue, put the motion to voice vote which was unanimously adopted.
Edited By Grace Namiji
Written by: Kevin Nwabueze