It is reported that sixty (60) girls are killed daily due to child marriage related causes as pregnancy and childbirth – a usual culprit that has plagued the world for millennia.
The International Day of the Girl Child was celebrated yesterday. A day set aside to raise awareness of the gender inequality gap, explicitly touching on lack of access to equal education opportunities, health care, legal opportunities, gender-based violence and forced child marriage.
To commemorate the day in Nigeria, ‘Save the Child International’, a Human rights Non-Governmental Organisation, issued a report commenting on the rate the girl child marries early in Nigeria. The Report displayed that 44% of Nigerian girls under the age of 18 get married, one of the highest statistics worldwide.
The Report by the NGO, signed by its Chief Executive, Inger Ashing, highlighted various reasons that give rise to the gender-inequality conditions availing the girl-child, such as insecurity, war, kidnapping, COVID-19s pandemic, economic hardships.
60 Girls Killed Daily – Child Marriage, The Usual Culprit
The ‘State of Nigerian Girls Report’ approximates 22,000 girls a year die from pregnancy and childbirth-related matters due to early marriage. The Report estimates that West and Central Africa accounts for half of the child-marriage related deaths globally, 26 deaths a day.
The ‘Global Girlhood Report 2021: Girls’ rights in crisis’ evinced that South Asia experiences 2,000 child marriage related deaths yearly (six per day), followed closely by East Asia and the Pacific, which foresee 650 deaths annually or two deaths daily, and finally the Caribbean with 560 yearly deaths or two a day.
Though it is estimated that 80 million child marriages globally were prevented in the last decade, it is still expected that 10 million girls globally will be forced to marry by 2030.
The Organisation hopes that Governments will prioritise girls and take necessary measures to prevent child marriage and thus child marriage related deaths in Nigeria.