Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State on Saturday insisted that parents who failed to send their children to school in September in the state would be jailed.
The governor, who stated this at the Sir Kashim Ibrahim Government House, during the screening of the “He named me Malala,” documentary organised by his wife, Hadiza, said parents who did not want to take their children to school, were free to leave the state.
He said, “You can leave Kaduna State if you don’t want to send your child to school next month. No street begging again. All our children must go to school. Any parent who refuses to send his or her child to school will be prosecuted and send to prison.”
This is just as the state Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Prof. Andrew Nok, said the current administration in the state had awarded scholarships to 40 girls to study Medicine in Uganda as a way of encouraging girl-child education.
Also, el-Rufai’ wife, Hadiza, said the percentage of out-of-school girls was too high and the government had decided to solve the problem.
She said young girls constituted a significant percentage of the population and must be supported with education and training required to ensure that they contributed effectively to the society.
El-Rufai’s wife said, “I wish to start by thanking all of you for coming to this screening of the ‘He named me Malala Documentary.’ While most of us know Malala as the 19-year-old Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner, it is important to know where her journey started.
“Malala was just a regular Pakistani girl with a penchant for education until in 2012 when her pursuit for education resulted in her being shot and put in a coma. The attack received worldwide condemnation, she has since recovered from the tragedy and has translated this tragedy to worldwide advancements in girl child education.
“In Kaduna State, we are working assiduously to create opportunities, the percentage of girls out of school is way too high and this is a problem we have decided to solve. In cognisance of this, we are working hard to increase female enrolment in good schools, improve school curriculum and make affordable health care available for everyone.”