What happened to being able to walk on the streets safely, unafraid of the next person walking beside you? Not afraid of being kidnapped or killed?
What happened to attending school daily unafraid, having dreams and aspirations to look forward to?
What happened to being given a fair chance to education and life irrespective of gender? To grow up in a nation safe and secured?
As we celebrate this year’s children’s day, we cannot fail to admit that children all over the world, Nigeria inclusive are faced with many unpleasant situations that are gradually crippling their confidence in themselves and in the nation that they should call ‘home.’ Many parents may try to shield their children from this harsh reality, but the children can see and feel the threat on their lives and future. Worse is that, they do not even understand the reason for this antagonism against them. They are caught up in the middle of a fight they didn’t start, and made to suffer for a cause they know nothing about.
Obvious is the fact that quality education of children has been under threat by so many issues; lack of funding for education, no teacher, or having an untrained teacher, inadequate facilities, distance from home to school, expense of education etc.
Worse and saddening is the rate of insecurity; kidnapping, killings and the likes that has heightened and plagued this generation of Nigerian children. The threat is being brought right to their doorsteps and schools, making it even more fearful. They see their classmates today and the next minute, they hear they are in the middle of nowhere not sure if they will return alive, held captive by unknown men. They see families in mourning, torn apart from their loved ones missing.
Due to this, the rate of school enrollment and parents’ willingness to release their children to go to school daily has been greatly affected. How can quality formal education be achieved in this way? How can children concentrate maximally with so much uncalled for breaks in-between? How can schemes of work be covered? How can children compete favourably with their counterparts all over the world?
As we celebrate this year’s children’s day, this is a call to focus on the safety and security of the Nigerian children as a priority. A call to tackle the attack on the education of children. Children deserve a nation safe to live in and a future worth looking forward to.
Happy children’s day 2021!
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