KANO State government is proposing introducing a new law that will make it compulsory for al girls to complete secondary school before they are allowed to get married as part of a plan to curtail teenage marriages and high drop-out rates.
Nigeria currently has the highest number of out-of-school pupils in the world with a staggering 13m children of school age not in education. Kano is one of the worst affected states with about 1m of its children not in school as girls are married off at an early age, while boys drop out to attend almajiri religious schools, where they get indoctrinated to become religious zealots.
In a bid to reverse this ugly trend, Governor Abdullahi Ganduje, has revealed that the state is planning to pass a new law barring girls from getting married until they have at least finished secondary school. Speaking during the 2019 Human Rights Summit/Award with the theme, Adopting Rights Based Approach in the Public Sector Sustainable Development Agenda organised by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Governor Ganduje said radical action was needed.
Governor Ganduje said: “The much talked about almajiri system is now being integrated with modern system of education. With the girl-child education, you know the problems of marrying underage girls but from our policy now, all our girls have to at least finish secondary education before they are married.”
According to the governor who was one of the awardees on the night, the almajiri system of education was now being integrated into the modern system of education. He explained that his government introduced free and compulsory basic and secondary education, while also taking care of all the out-of-school children to make sure they are being given the opportunity of going to school.