President Tinubu Launches Education Campaign, Advocates Girl-child Education

President Tinubu has launched the “We Are Equal” education campaign initiated by the Organization of African First Ladies for Development, OAFLAD, to enhance Inclusivity in education, skill development and gender equity.

Launching the campaign on Monday at the State House in Abuja, president Tinubu advocated for sustained efforts in creating opportunities for all children to access quality education, especially the girl child.

As contained in a statement by Ajuri Ngelale, the president’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, the campaign has been launched in 15 African countries in different iterations, focusing on health, education, economic empowerment, and gender-based violence.

Ngelale said the component of the programme in Nigeria is tagged “Education as a Powerful Tool for Change” and is led by the First Lady, Oluremi Tinubu.

The President applauded the African First Ladies for their commitment to advancing gender equality across the continent.

He said: “This campaign holds significant importance for us in Africa. I, therefore, congratulate you all, particularly my dear wife, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, the First Lady of Nigeria, who has chosen education as a primary tool to champion this campaign nationwide.”

“The focus of the launch of this campaign in Nigeria, ‘Education as a Powerful Tool for Change’ is critical for Africa’s development, if we are to attain gender equity and ensure equal opportunities for all.”

“We must continue to create opportunities for all our children to access quality education without leaving anyone behind, particularly the girl child. We must engender a society where everyone has the same opportunities, regardless of who they are, because doing that leads to a stronger and more peaceful society for all.”

He also noted that the launching of the campaign coincides with the re-introduction of the Alternative High School for Girls by the First Lady.

He explained that the initiative aimed to give young girls who have dropped out of school a second chance to fulfil their aspirations.

He said: “I am happy to note that the foundation stone of one of the schools was recently laid in Osun State, in western Nigeria, by the First Lady. More schools are underway across the country, supported by state governments, the federal government through the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), and other development partners.”

“As governor of Lagos State, before I became President of Nigeria on May 29, 2023, I witnessed first-hand, how societal challenges, such as unwanted teenage pregnancy, domestic violence, human trafficking and drug addiction can obstruct the promising future of young girls.”

“Indeed, the re-introduction of Alternative High School for Girls by the First Lady of Nigeria must have received inspiration from the successful implementation of a similar initiative in Lagos State during my tenure as governor.”

“We must be conscious of the fact that the empowerment of women and girls is essential to achieving each of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.”

“We must work together to promote laws and policies that protect and promote women’s rights, invest in girls’ education and skills development, and create economic opportunities that are accessible to all.”

“For us in Nigeria, the full operationalization of the Student’s Loan (Access to Higher Education) Act is key to achieving these goals as it will ensure that all young people have unhindered access to education.”

“The Nigerian government, through the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, is also implementing a N50,000 non-repayable grant programme for one million Nigerians in Nano businesses and skilled trades, including women and youth.”