Bring back Nigeria girls and keep their schools open too | ActionAid UK

Bring back Nigeria girls and keep their schools open too

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UK Foreign Secretary William Hague met today with the Nigerian Foreign Minister and government officials from neighbouring countries at the End Sexual Violence in Conflict Summit in London, to discuss the abduction of over 200 Nigerian girls in April.

ActionAid’s Country Director in Nigeria, Dr Hussaini Abdu said:

While a co-ordinated response to Boko Haram extremists is imperative, more must be done inside Nigeria to address poverty and inequality. That includes the undervaluation of education, particularly for girls.

The Nigerian government must not only bring the abducted girls home. They must invest in and keep their schools open for them too.

Eight hundred classrooms and 200 schools in the north of the country have been destroyed by Boko Haram since 2013 and since February last year, more than 15,000 children have stopped attending class in Borno state alone.

It is dispiriting that the Nigerian government's response to these horrendous attacks on schools has been to allow them to stay closed.”

For interviews at the summit and more information contact:

(At the summit) Anjali Kwatra: +44 (0)7941 371357 | +44 (0)203 122 0633 | anajali.kwatra@actionaid.org
(In London office) Natalie Curtis: +44 (0) 203 122 0641 | natalie.curtis@actionaid.org

Notes to Editors:

• ActionAid has been working for many years to enable girls in Nigeria to enrol and succeed in school.

• The Foreign Secretary, William Hague and Angelina Jolie, Special Envoy for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, are co-chairing the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict on 10 — 13 June 2014 at ExCel London.

• The summit is the largest gathering ever brought together on this subject, with a view to creating irreversible momentum against sexual violence in conflict and practical action that impact those on the ground.