The one-day Minister of State for Education, Dorcas Joshua, on Monday called for increased investment in education.
Joshua served as a one-day minister to mark this year’s International Girl-Child Day.
Speaking at an event to mark the day in Abuja on Monday, Joshua said investment in education would close the gender digital divide in the country.
The 2021 edition of the day was themed “Digital generation, our generation; Digital Revolution: Not without girls.”
Joshua described the theme for the celebration as apt, saying there is need to invest in knowing more about girls and young women’s digital realities.
She said it was also necessary to support learning solutions fit for digital world.
Joshua said, “An analysis of data from Nigeria’s annual school census of 2019/2020 indicates that the average transition rates from lower basic education to upper basic stands at 58 per cent for the northern states of Kano. Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto and Zamfara.
“The national average for girls’ transition from primary to junior secondary stands at 64 per cent. Even the national average remains unacceptable to me.
“As data show, girls’ enrolment and transition continue to be jeopardised. And even where enrolled, girls are less likely than boys to complete secondary education due to so many reasons.
“Only one of six girls graduates from primary school are able to transit to secondary schools. I ask them, where are the rest of the girls? We must find them.”
Meanwhile, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, Mr Sonny Echono, said no economy could attain its full potentials without the contribution of women, youths, girls and boys alike.
He said, “It is estimated that about 2.2 billion youths below the age of 25 still do not have internet access at home and girls make up most of the figure.
“Since October 11, 2012, the day is to bring to the front burner the importance of girls and highlight the unique role they play in every society and economy.
“There is need for all hands to be on deck in ensuring that Nigerian girls achieve irreversible progress towards gender equality through digital learning in both online and offline environment.”