New Report Reveals True Cost Of Violence Against Children In Nigeria
An unprecedented report, launched jointly by UNICEF , Ministry of Budget and National Planning and the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development revealed the high economic cost of violence against children in Nigeria.
According to the report, the economic impact of the violence against children in Nigeria is estimated to be about USD$6.1 billion, which is equivalent to about 1.07 percent of the country’s GDP.
Permanent Secretary ,Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development. Mrs. Ifeoma Anagbogu,said there was need to eliminate any form of violence against children from a moral perspective and an economic perspective.
She noted that the financial loss from the cumulative loss of earnings due to loss of productivity, stemming from suffering associated with different degrees of violence, over time.
On his part Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Budget and National Planning ,Mr Olajide Odewale said the study point to the strong need for increased funding of interventions by government to reduce violence against children in Nigeria.
It was noted that the study may actually underestimate the economic burden of violence against children, as several serious consequences of such violence were not included, due to a current lack of data.
The report revealed that about half of the Nigerian children surveyed experienced physical violence by parents, adult relatives, direct or indirect caregivers or community members, before they reached 18.
The evidence presented in the report indicates an urgent need to provide child protection services in Nigeria and prioritize the elimination of violence against children, which can ensure the country’s human capital has the mental, physical, and emotional stability needed to boost its social and economic development.
UNICEF’s Country Representative in Nigeria, Mohamed Malick Fall, said this year marks the 30th anniversary of the Convention of the Rights of the Child, which give an opportunity to join in the collective efforts to protect children from violence, abuse and neglect.
Mohammed Fall therefore called for a re-commitment to increase investment in child protection services.
The research on violence against children was led by the Government of Nigeria, in collaboration with UNICEF, and with funding from the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), through USAID, the EU and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.