By Peter Okutu – Abakaliki
A Non-governmental Organisation, Civil Society Action Coalition on Education for All, CSACEFA, on Tuesday, stated that the absence of a policy or law that engenders the girl child education was what has accounted for the low enrollment ratio of the girls into various schools in the State.
The NGO which made its findings known while briefing some Journalists on the challenges affecting the girl child education stressed that there is no existing policy or law that promotes girl-child education in the State.
CSACEFA is implementing an education-based programme in six States, including Ebonyi with support from Global Partnership for Education, GPE till the end of 2021.
The southeast zonal Coordinator of CSACEFA, Elder Godwin Arua who stressed the need for the education of the girl-child in every home added that the NGO was working towards developing a Bill when passed into law will pave way for the mandatory education of the girl child.
“The States to benefit from this education-based programme include Kastina, Oyo, Ebonyi, Adamawa, Benue, and Cross Rivers. GPE has an interest in girl-child education. We are working towards formulating a Bill that promotes the education of the girl-child. There is no law or policy in Ebonyi that promotes girl child education.”
In her remarks, the State Coordinator of CSACEFA, Princess Frances Mgbada agreed that poverty, ignorance, religion, negative cultural practices, family background, peer group influence were some of the factors militating against the education of the girl-child in the State.
She added that the NGO would collaborate with the State Government, NGOs, LGAs, Institutions, and spirited individuals towards tackling the challenges facing the education of the girl-child in the State.
According to her, the inclusion of women in governance, change in cultural practices, advocacies, enlightenment, free education for the girl-child, creation of a department in the Ministry of Education to monitor and evaluate the enrollment of girls in schools, among others would help reverse the ugly trend affecting the girl-child education.
“The education of the girl-child cannot be overemphasized. it’s a major issue. We have visited Ministries and MDAs. The House of Assembly encouraged us. A process is on to ensure that there is a bill that will encourage girl child education. We would like to sponsor a Bill that will finally form a policy. No State has a policy on girl child education.
“Unfortunately, the enrollment of girls drops as they progress into different stages in school. Education should be completely free to enhance the education of the girl child.”