A Fifteen-year-old ceremonial Ambassador of Sweden to Nigeria, Miss Mercy has stressed the need for the federal and state governments to invest in gild child education especially in the area of technical and digital literacy.
She stated this during a hybrid (online and in-person) forum at the Swedish embassy as she assumed ceremonial duties as Ambassador of the mission for a day at the Swedish mission’s office in Abuja in commemoration of the October 11 International Day of the Girl (IDG) 2021.
The theme of this year’s event is “digital generation, our generation.”
The United Nations declared October 11 as the International Day of the Girl in 2012 to highlight challenges faced by girls and having public conversations on how to address them.
The event was organised by Plan International Nigeria and the Embassy of Sweden in partnership with the TecHer Foundation ahead of October 11.
Plan International is an independent development and humanitarian non-profit organisation that advances children’s rights and equality for girls.
“Through the internet, we can learn, connect with other girls around the world, express our thoughts and talents, have fun and discover new things.”“Digital literacy will help us to improve our writing, reading, listening, and speaking skills,” Mercy, a primary six pupil of OakBridge Foundation, said.
Mercy emphasised that girls needed the access, knowledge, and skills to be online with confidence, to find information, and create and share content.
She said: “false information makes us doubt ourselves and our worth. False information harms our mental health. It affects our trust in politics and politicians. And most of all? It stops us from achieving our ambition.”
Earlier in his remarks, the ambassador of Sweden to Nigeria, Mr. Micheal Grans said digital literacy and access remain major challenges for girls and the gap between men and women in tech was wide.
” It is “important that women and girls have the same rights online” and while issues like online bullying and harassment were not gender-specific, girls have been seen to be more targeted than boys.”