On Children and sustainable development, I just want to be specific about some challenges surrounding this issue in Nigeria. This is important because Nigeria happens to be a member state to the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Currently, Nigeria's demography is bent on its youthful generation, which amounts up to 80 percent of the over 160 million people in the country.
Children specifically are facing a lot challenges ranging from orphanage, violation and deprivation of their rights to parental care/support, education, enabling environment for growth etc. Various insurgences in both Southern and Northern Nigeria has squarely affected the well-being of children. In the whole, this is proven when you drive along the roads of major cities and towns in Nigeria. What you see are children begging road users for help -whether financially or otherwise, to assist them survive. This to me, raises so many questions unanswered questions.
Government with the support of individuals, corporate organization and NGOs have to urgently work out sustainable modalities and strategies to take children off the street, by directly taking charge of those street kids and also going further to inquire about situations that led to their becoming beggars.
Paying deaf ears to these issues would continuously create chaos and instability in the society. These children are growing and becoming more vulnerable to drug use and abuse, child pregnancy, unsafe abortion, rape, thuggery, armed robbery and all forms of societal violation and illegalities. What future do we expect if these gaps keep widening?
"Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear." -Nelson Mandela, former president of South Africa
"Children are our most valuable resource." -Herbert Hoover, 31st U.S. president
"I continue to believe that if children are given the necessary tools to succeed, they will succeed beyond their wildest dreams!" -David Vitter, U.S. senator
"It's the greatest poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish." -Mother Teresa, Roman Catholic nun