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FG moves to end child marriage

The Minister of  Women Affairs and Social Development,  Aisha Alhassan has revealed that the federal government is set to launch a National Campaign to end…

The Minister of  Women Affairs and Social Development,  Aisha Alhassan has revealed that the federal government is set to launch a National Campaign to end child marriages in the country.
The women minister made this known yesterday during a two day “Technical Meeting of Experts on Girl Child Development and Capacity Building towards Ending Child Marriage in Nigeria”decried the high prevalence of child marriage in the North West with figures up to over 70 per cent.
 Aisha Jummai Alhassan who was represented by  Mrs Esther Mshelia, the Director, Women and Gender Affairs, noted that the African Union (AU) has launched an official campaign on Ending Child Marriage in Africa in 2014.
According to her, the ministry has set up a Technical Working Group on Ending Child Marriage and other harmful practices to ensure the menace is reduced.
“In line with the continental move, ending child marriage is one of the key priorities of the government of Nigeria and indeed this present administration, thus to consolidate multi-stakeholder action against child marriage in Nigeria, the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development recently inaugurated a National Working Group on Ending Child Marriage and other harmful traditional practices; and that group is called TWG.”
She continued, “It has 32 members and they would support in addressing the issues and accelerate the full realisation of children’s human rights.
“The objectives of the group are to develop and implement a holistic multi-sectoral strategy for ending child marriage in Nigeria.
“They are also charged to raising awareness on issues around child marriage and encourage behavior change among the citizenry.
“And they are also charged with monitoring and implementation of the existing laws on child marriage in Nigeria and have a robust monitoring and evaluation structure.”
She decried that child marriage was detrimental to the development of the girl-child, adding that it robs the girl of her childhood, jeopardizes her health, education and limits her chances of actualising her potentials.

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