Renewed hope for Nigerian children as UNICEF pushes to mitigate child poverty

Participants at the ongoing training in Gombe.
Participants at the ongoing training in Gombe.
Renewed hope for Nigerian children as UNICEF pushes to mitigate child poverty

Nigeria’s millions of beleaguered children who are pushed into multi-dimensional poverty, child labour and other forms of deprivations will soon heave a sigh of relief as UNICEF brings child poverty and its deleterious consequences into the kleigh light of public discourse and policy maker’s attention.

During a two day multi stakeholders media dialogue involving state actors and journalists convened by UNICEF Bauchi field office which commences in Gombe on Tuesday, a foray into the causes of child-poverty and ways of mitigating them were roundly dissected.

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Charging journalists to champion and refocus attention on the topic, UNICEF communications officer, Bauchi field office, Opeyemi Olagunju said being agenda setters, the journalists are best suited to take the gauntlet at ensuring tha right policies, actions and best practices towards mitigating the ugly trend are emplaced.

He noted that Nigerian children who constitute about half of the country’s population represent a crucial asset for the nation’s future noting that the country cannot afford to remain reticent in view of this critical concern.

Olagunju called on journalists to exercise mediation and top notch professionalism while reporting on the subject in order to carry stakeholders especially the policy makers along considering the sensitive nature of the issue.

Also in his presentation, Dr. Yusuf Auta, social policy specialists, BFO called on journalists to champion the lot of Nigerian children who would take the gauntlet of leadership in the future.

He noted that children who are facing monetary poverty or multi-dimensional poverty would find it very difficult to compete with their peers who do not suffer from such deprivations.

Auta noted that according to the analysis of children, it was established that corruption, unemployment, violence and insurgency, inadequate investment in social sector, insufficient money from social security benefits are some of the factors behind the preponderance of child poverty.

He noted that child poverty comes in two forms, monetary poverty and multi-dimensional poverty which borders around lack of economic capacity and deprivations in more than three areas identified as core needs of the child.

According to him the areas are water, sanitation, housing, health, education, nutrition, information and child protection adding that any child who suffered deprivations in three or more of these areas is considered to be suffering from multi-dimensional poverty.

Also in his presentation on the effects of child poverty, on socio economic development in Nigeria, Dr. Ali Dankumo, a university don called on journalists to put the issue of child poverty at the front burner of discussion in order to spur the needed action by the policy makers.

While calling for concerted efforts to mitigate multi-dimensional poverty, Dankumo said the pestilence transcends monetary borders because it has incorporated deprivations in education, Renewed hope for Nigerian children as UNICEF pushes to mitigate child poverty

Nigeria’s millions of beleaguered children who are pushed into multi-dimensional poverty, child labour and other forms of deprivations will soon heave a sigh of relief as UNICEF brings child poverty and its deleterious consequences into the kleigh light of public discourse and policy maker’s attention.

During a two day multi stakeholders media dialogue involving state actors and journalists convened by UNICEF Bauchi field office which commences in Gombe on Tuesday, a foray into the causes of child-poverty and ways of mitigating them were roundly dissected.

Charging journalists to champion and refocus attention on the topic, UNICEF communications officer, Bauchi field office, Opeyemi Olagunju said being agenda setters, the journalists are best suited to take the gauntlet at ensuring tha right policies, actions and best practices towards mitigating the ugly trend are emplaced.

He noted that Nigerian children who constitute about half of the country’s population represent a crucial asset for the nation’s future noting that the country cannot afford to remain reticent in view of this critical concern.

Olagunju called on journalists to exercise mediation and top notch professionalism while reporting on the subject in order to carry stakeholders especially the policy makers along considering the sensitive nature of the issue.

Also in his presentation, Dr. Yusuf Auta, social policy specialists, BFO called on journalists to champion the lot of Nigerian children who would take the gauntlet of leadership in the future.

He noted that children who are facing monetary poverty or multi-dimensional poverty would find it very difficult to compete with their peers who do not suffer from such deprivations.

Auta noted that according to the analysis of children, it was established that corruption, unemployment, violence and insurgency, inadequate investment in social sector, insufficient money from social security benefits are some of the factors behind the preponderance of child poverty.

He noted that child poverty comes in two forms, monetary poverty and multi-dimensional poverty which borders around lack of economic capacity and deprivations in more than three areas identified as core needs of the child.

According to him the areas are water, sanitation, housing, health, education, nutrition, information and child protection adding that any child who suffered deprivations in three or more of these areas is considered to be suffering from multi-dimensional poverty.

Also in his presentation on the effects of child poverty, on socio economic development in Nigeria, Dr. Ali Dankumo, a university don called on journalists to put the issue of child poverty at the front burner of discussion in order to spur the needed action by the policy makers.

While calling for concerted efforts to mitigate multi-dimensional poverty, Dankumo said the pestilence transcends monetary borders because it has incorporated deprivations in education, healthcare living standards etc.

He called on the government to as a matter of urgency improve access to quality education, healthcare, strengthens social safety nets and promote child friendly policies amongst others.

Also speaking, the commissioner of budget and planning in Gombe State, Salihu Baba Alkali thanked UNICEF for bringing the concern to the front burner of national discuss.

He noted that the action is in tandem with the state government’s move to mitigate the menace in the state.

“As you are aware the Media Chat on Child Poverty is in line with current developmental priorities of our dear Geo-political zone. Therefore, it would be immensely contributory to an improved Child development.

“You all know, despite its huge potentials, our region has been contending with poor human development Indicators in virtually all areas. This is compounded by the activities of insurgency and massive influx of people from conflict areas that surround us. This has affected the impact of the modest gains we are making.

“In this regard, the Government and people of Gombe, Adamawa and Bauchi state are overwhelmed by this development as its timely to brainstorms and harness ideas on how to tackle the menace and reduce the indices of Child poverty in the region. I commend UNICEF for their tireless support especial in the North East states of Gombe, Adamawa and Bauchi,” he said.

Also speaking, the permanent secretary budget and economic planning, Adamawa State, Amos Enoch also reitrated the commitment of Adamawa State government to reduce the menace.

He thanked UNICEF for spearheading the move to ensure the reduction of child poverty to thd barest minimum adding that Adamawa State is ready to work with stakeholders towards the success of the bold drive.

 

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