The World Bank has committed the sum of $21 Million as grant to Kaduna State, in north-west Nigeria, to improve girl child education.
The grant was announced on Tuesday by the World Bank’s Senior Education Specialist, Dr. Olatunde Adekola, and it was provided under the Nigerian Partnership for Education Project.
At the inauguration of the project at the Government House in Kaduna, Dr. Adekola, said the grant was meant to support the education of children, especially those at the rural areas to have access to qualitative education.
He explained that the grant would be used for the training of teachers, renovation of schools, provision of teaching materials and offering scholarship to students.
In Nigeria, many children do not attend school because of the inability of their parents to afford the associated costs of fees, uniforms, textbooks and other expenses.
The girl child has been proven to be at a more disadvantaged position when it comes to going to school, and report has it that they have the highest percentage of out-of-school children in Nigeria.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai, who received the delegation, expressed concern at the deplorable state of education in the state and the north in general, saying that his administration had set up some intervention policies and programmes aimed at revamping the sector.
He commended the World Bank and other donor agencies for their financial support to the education sector.
High point of the event is the symbolic presentation of cheque to indigent pupils and teachers.
Apart from Kaduna, other states that are already benefiting from the World Bank grant include Katsina, Kano, Jigawa, and Sokoto.
According to a UNICEF report, 40 per cent of Nigerian children, aged 6-11, do not attend any primary school with the northern region recording the lowest school attendance rate, particularly for girls.
The project, which will last for four years, is expected to boost girl child education in those states.