The Nigerian Economic Summit Group on Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the United Nations Children’s Fund to address the menace surrounding poverty and rights violations among children in Nigeria.
The partnership which was officially signed at the launch of the NESG-UNICEF MOU and partnership to tackle child rights infringement and poverty in Abuja will receive support from the Federal Government.
Speaking at the partnership, the NESG chairman, Niyi Yusuf said that children remain a vital part of the mandate of the group and believe that urgent action is required to ensure that they do the right thing to promote the development of Nigerian children.
Yusuf also said that the focus of NESG is always to promote the modernisation of the Nigerian economy to one that is sustainable, globally competitive and promotes shared prosperity for all.
He added that Nigerian children represent the asset of this country, stressing that it is important that they invest and plan to ensure that these children will become the leaders of tomorrow.
As we all know the multi-dimensional poverty index that was released last year says a lot about the state of poverty in Nigeria and of course poverty in our children, adding that the move “is both timely and significant” to address rising poverty among children in the country.
“Today’s children are tomorrow’s leaders, and it is crucial that we tackle child rights violations and poverty in Nigeria to ensure their success. According to the National MPI 2022, two-thirds of our children are multi-dimensionally poor, with 51% of all poor people being children. This means over half of the poor children lack the intellectual stimulation necessary for early childhood development,” Yusuf said.
“Our partnership with UNICEF is both timely and significant. UNICEF is a leading provider of humanitarian and developmental aid for children worldwide, and this launch represents a critical step towards a future where children’s rights are respected, and they receive the support they need to become productive citizens.”
Speaking also, the UNICEF, Nigeria Representative, Cristian Munduate, said the partnership was in line with the organisation’s commitment to protecting children’s rights.
“UNICEF is dedicated to protecting children’s rights in Nigeria and worldwide, and helping them build a strong foundation for their future. Our partnership with NESG highlights the urgency of realizing this goal and will coordinate efforts to achieve child rights protection in Nigeria through effective public policies,” she said.
“Investing in children is investing in human capital. The right nutrition and care, especially during the first 1000 days of life, can have a significant impact on a child’s ability to grow, learn, and rise out of poverty. It can break the cycle of poverty for families, communities, and countries, and shape a society’s long-term stability and prosperity.”
She said that the partnership will focus on aligning the nation’s poverty reduction strategy with the child and national multidimensional poverty index.
She added that the initiative would review social sector policies to reduce child poverty and implement presidential-level accountability measures for reporting and feedback.