Kuni Tyessi in Abuja
Residents of Kano State, under the auspices of the School Board Management Committee (SBMC) have put their weight behind child spacing and girl enrolment into schools, stressing that its dividends are insurmountable.
The Coordinator, Mothers’ Association, Gwale Local Government Area, a branch of the committee, Mrs. Umma Ahmad Abubakar, who stated this in Kano during a visit by journalists and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) officials, said the rising population in the state can be harnessed through child spacing.
She said with education and enlightenment, girls will know and put into practice benefits of child spacing and the need to permit their bodies rest, before planning for another child, stressing that with this in place, households will plan their families well and have only the number of children they can afford to maintain and send to school.
She recalled that there were women who have had up to 17 births and living in single rooms with the children who because of their number have been denied basic education which is bound to have its attendant consequences of crime, early marriage and other anti-social behaviours.
She said: “Many are gradually getting to understand the benefits of education especially in child spacing. With education, the girls will be able to know the importance of discussing with their husbands on the need for their bodies to rest before the preparation of another child.
“In this town, we have women who have given birth to up to 15 and 17 children and are unable to provide their basic needs, not to talk of sending them to school. Sometimes you will see all of them living in a single room and being exposed to all kinds of health hazards and social ills. But with education, they will know better.”
Project Coordinator, UNICEF, Kano State, Mr. Richard Akanet had earlier revealed that reason given so far for non-enrolment into schools include distance, opportunity cost and direct cost which have been pegged at 44 per cent, 36 per cent and 26 per cent respectively.