President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday launched a campaign to end violence against children by 2030, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said in a statement.
The president launched the campaign at the state house conference centre, promising to protect children from violence.
“I say to children in Nigeria – on this historic day, we make a pledge,” said Babachir Lawal, who represented the president.
The 2030 end violence against children campaign is being supported by UNICEF and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as a follow up to the 2015 campaign tagged ‘Year of Action to End Violence Against Children, and launched by the president in September 2015.
Several states, including Lagos, Cross River, Benue and Plateau, domesticated the campaign, while Bayelsa became the 23rd state of the nation to domesticate the child’s rights act.
Violence against children has become endemic in Nigeria, with as many as 6 out of 10 children experiencing physical, emotional or sexual violence.
On Monday, Arrida Relief Foundation, a Kaduna-based NGO, in said up to eight underage girls are raped weekly in the state.
“Ending violence against children is everybody’s business,” Manuel Fontaine, UNICEF’s West and Central Africa regional director, said.
“With this campaign, Nigeria has shown it is determined to mobilise political will and resources to tackle all forms of violence against children wherever it happens.”