The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in a statement on Saturday says no fewer than 18.3 million Nigerian children are currently identified to have lacked access to the four walls of the classrooms.
A statement from the leadership of UNICEF made available to Core Reporters on Saturday, also expressed sadness that the high number of children attending school are not getting a solid education that can translate into good prospects for their future.
The Executive Director, UNICEF, Catherine Russell, also identified protection of the rights of every child irrespective of his or her background, as the surest way to build a more peaceful, prosperous, and unjust world for everyone.
The the organization held that discrimination against children based on ethnicity, and religion, are rife in countries worldwide.
They affirmed that the impact of such acts on children, shows the extent to which racism and discrimination impact children’s education, health, access to a registered birth, and a fair and equal justice system, and highlights widespread disparities among minority and ethnic groups.”
“Systemic racism and discrimination” as further stated by them “put children at risk of deprivation and exclusion that can last a lifetime.” Affirming that “this hurts us all” they urged each and every individual as well as organizations to work round the clock to protect the rights of every child.
According to the statement “discrimination and exclusion deepen intergenerational deprivation and poverty and result in poorer health, nutrition, and learning outcomes for children, a higher likelihood of incarceration, higher rates of pregnancy among adolescent girls, and lower employment rates and earnings in adulthood.”