18 July 2017

Nigeria: Declare Emergency On Education, Malala Tells Govt

Photo: The Guardian
Malala visits Osinbajo.

Abuja — The Pakistani activist for female education, Malala Yousafzai, yesterday, urged the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency on the education of girl child and young boys.

Yousafzai, who is the youngest ever Noble Prize laureate and known for human rights advocacy, especially education of women in her native Swat Valley, in Khyber Pakhturhwa, northwest Pakistan, met with Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. Speaking to State House correspondents after her meeting with the Acting President, she called for the implementation of the Child's Rights Act by all the three tiers of government.

On what transpired at the meeting, she said: "It was a very good meeting. I had very good response. I highlighted a few issues. The first was to ask the government to declare a state of emergency for education because the education of the Nigerian girls and boys is really important. The Federal, state and local governments should all be united for this.

"Secondly, the spending should be made public and thirdly, the Child's Rights Act should be implemented in all states. I was really happy to hear positive response from the acting president that they are happy with the suggestion of implementing declaration of emergency in education and that they are happy to work more on education and that they are united.

"I am happy to hear positive responses from the ministers as well that they are ensuring that education is prioritised in every girl and in every boy and education in Nigeria is given priority.

"In the morning, I met Chibok girls and I was very happy at what the minister is doing to support the Chibok girls. I am really excited to see them going back to their homes and to their families and continuing their education. But I hope the other girls, who are still under abduction of Boko Haram, are released."

Recall that on October 9, 2012, Yousafzai was injured after a Taliban gunman attempted to murder her. Yousafzai remained unconscious, in critical condition at the Rawalpindi Institute but later her condition improved enough for her to be sent to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birminghan, United Kingdom, UK.

The murder attempt sparked a national and international outpouring of support for Yousafzai.

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