With the closure of about 60 boarding schools in northern Nigeria, the number of out-of-school children may rise to 13 million, a survey has shown.
The survey was done by the Incentive-Based Programme (IBP) of the Policy House International.
The Executive Director of IBP, Taiwo Akerele, said the trend is not checked, out-of-school children in Nigeria may rise from 10.5m to 13m by December 2021.
“From our records, close to 800 students have been kidnapped between December 2020 and March 2021. This has also resulted in the closure of boarding schools in at least three states over the period and available data shows that over 60 schools in Niger, Zamfara, Katsina and some parts of Kaduna and Sokoto State with at least an average of 600 students are affected by this sudden closure”.
This according to him has serious implications for academic stability, domestic finance, crime among adolescents, rising illiteracy in the region and security implications, drug, cultism and general crime.
He lamented that while other countries are doing everything to close the gap in the number of out-of-school children, the activities of Boko Haram, kidnappers and bandits is increasing the cases in Nigeria.
He, however, called on the Nigerian Government to accelerate the implementation of the lofty educational intervention programmes outlined under the Alternate School Programme (ASP) earlier launched in January 2021.
He also urged state governments to fast track its investment in perimeter fencing, local security arrangements and the deployment of technology in securing the schools.