Former President, Olusegun Obasanjo has condemned opponents of girl-child education in Nigeria saying, ‘woe betide such persons’.
Obasanjo spoke in Abeokuta, Ogun State, during a programme organised in commemoration of this year’s World Diabetes Day.
He said his personal experience with girl-child education made him include girl-child education as an area of concentration for his Olusegun Obasanjo Foundation.
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The former President narrated how his father pulled his younger sister out of school because he believed ‘the girl-child education ends in the kitchen’.
He insisted that the idea of prioritising male-child education over the girl-child must be ‘killed’.
Obasanjo said, “When I started school in the village, I had a junior sister, who was enrolled in school two years after I had joined the school… and suddenly, our father decided that – because a girl-child education ends in the kitchen, pulled her out of school – I remained in school.
“And that singular action made the difference between her development into adulthood and my development into adulthood. I had a plan that whenever I return from the UK, I will re-enrol her back to school. But by the time I came back from the UK, my wife had given my sister out in marriage and that ended my sister’s education.
“Then, I vowed that whatever I can do for girl-child education, I will always do. And this unfortunate idea of girl-child education ending in the kitchen is unimportant. The culture of giving preference to a male child over a female child is an idea and culture that must be killed.
“Woe betide anyone who attempts to relegate my eldest child, Iyabo. Iyabo will crush such a person, be he or she,” he said.
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