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Over 10 million children are out of school in Nigeria and the global pandemic has only made it harder for young people to stay in school. There have been dire consequences for girls, who are at risk of being married off. In a recent report,…
A woman protests against child marriage in Lagos, Nigeria.
News

Examples of In-Person Education in Pandemic Offer Lessons for All

(Bolzano) – The measures some schools in Italy took to ensure access to quality education for students with disabilities during Covid-19-related school closures should inspire other schools to follow suit, Human Rights Watch said today. The steps…
Teacher supports three students sitting in an otherwise empty classroom, all wearing face masks.
News

Federal Government, Other States Should Follow Ekiti State

Ekiti State in southwest Nigeria has adopted a policy to ban the expulsion of girls from schools during and after pregnancy, an important step in ending the longstanding discriminatory practice. Although Nigeria’s Child…
Jacinta, 15, was excluded from school after authorities found out that she was pregnant.
News

Sexual Exploitation and Harassment Also Widespread in Secondary Schools

A hard-hitting BBC television documentary, Sex for Grades, has uncovered rampant sexual abuse, harassment, and bullying of students at two prestigious universities in Nigeria and Ghana, and launched what will hopefully be a new movement.   …
Cartoon for Tanzania Education Report
News

African Governments Should Ensure Right to Education

  (Nairobi) - Tens of thousands of pregnant girls and adolescent mothers are banned or discouraged from attending school across Africa, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today, ahead of the Day of the African Child…
Students enrolled in the final year of lower secondary school in the classroom in a village in Kolda region, southern Senegal. Adolescent mothers and married girls study in this school.
Report
Summary When the head teacher found out that I was pregnant, he called me to his office and told me, “You have to leave our school immediately because you are pregnant.” —Jamida K., Kahama, Tanzania, April 2014 We don’t allow pregnant girls to…
Video
Human Rights Watch is a nonprofit, nongovernmental human rights organization made up of roughly 400 staff members around the globe. Its staff consists of human rights professionals including country experts, lawyers, journalists, and academics of diverse…
Video
Boko Haram’s attacks on schools, students and teachers in northeast Nigeria have had a devastating impact on education. The conflict has left nearly one million children with little or no access to school, and Nigeria’s security forces have contributed to…
Report
Summary They had not received an education in that area for many, many, years….Now they [Boko Haram] have chased away the teachers. Their children have no future. —Teacher, Maiduguri, September 15, 2015 …
News
(N’Djamena, Chad) – “Even after I escaped from them and live far away from my village, I am still afraid,” a 17-year-old girl who escaped from Boko Haram last year told us in June. “I think of death many times.” The shocking abduction of 276…
News

Urgent Need for Aid, Protection for Fleeing Civilians

(Abuja) – Attacks by the Islamist armed group Boko Haram killed more than 1,000 civilians in 2015, based on witness accounts and an analysis of media reports. Boko Haram fighters have deliberately attacked villages and committed mass killings and…
Report
Summary You are no longer in Nigeria. You are now in an Islamic kingdom. Here, women’s rights are respected, not like in Nigeria where women are made to work, farm, fetch water and firewood,…
News

Government needs to get serious in protecting residents

The images of sorrowful parents, weeping profusely and brokenly asking when their daughters would be rescued, have struck a chord across Nigeria. The murmurs of discontent swelled with the government’s confused and inadequate responses to basic questions…
News
Hundreds of parents have been marching with placards demanding “Find our Daughters” in Nigeria, where over 200 girls were abducted by an Islamist armed group in late April. Many schools had been shut down because of repeated attacks by Boko Haram, whose…
News

Attacks Threaten Children, Undermine Right to Education

(Nairobi) – The militant Islamist group Boko Haram has set more than a dozen schools on fire in northern Nigeria, Human Rights Watch said today. Since the beginning of 2012, suspected Boko Haram members have attacked, damaged, and, in a few cases,…
News

A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

This briefing paper outlines some of the key questions that candidates should consider if they are to tackle the human rights situation in the country: corruption; ethnic and political violence; reform of the security services; and reform of the electoral…