FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Alliances for Africa Calls for the Urgent Mainstreaming of Comprehensive Sexuality Education into the Imo State Education System to Protect and Empower Girls.



Urgent Call to Mainstream Comprehensive Sexuality Education into the Imo State Education System to Protect and Empower Girls.

Today, on the occasion of the International Day of the Girl Child 2023, Alliances for Africa (AfA) brings attention to the many challenges faced by the girl child in her journey to growth and emphasizes the urgent need to mainstream Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) into the educational curriculum of Imo State. The theme for this year’s celebration, OUR TIME IS NOW, OUR RIGHTS, OUR FUTURE, underscores the necessity to address the challenges stemming from the lack of comprehensive sexuality education and its detrimental effects on girls in our society.

The path to growth and development for the girl child in Africa, particularly in Imo State, is laden with numerous challenges, often resulting in detrimental consequences for their well-being, education, and future prospects. It is crucial to shed light on these challenges to understand the imperative of integrating Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) into the school curriculum.

A recent distressing incident in Imo State involved a teenage girl experiencing menstrual cramps, seeking relief from her friends. Tragically, she fell victim to sexual abuse as her friends rather advised and arranged for gang rape to give her relief from menstrual cramps. This showcases the critical necessity for CSE to impart accurate knowledge and empower girls to protect themselves.

According to the United Nations Population Fund, no less than 770,000 births occur to adolescent girls below the age of 15 years in developing countries (UNFPA, 2013). According to the Nigerian Demographic Health Survey (NDHS), the adolescent birth rate in 2018 was 106 births per 1,000 women. Bauchi state had the highest number of adolescent births (198), while Imo state had the least. However, Imo State must pay attention to this report due to significant shifts brought about by the emergence of COVID-19, exposing weaknesses in safeguarding and protective mechanisms for the girl child, coupled with the current state of insecurity and the disruption of the Imo State school system. These factors have contributed to an increase in internal displacement, placing the girl child at the center of immense risk both within and outside the home.

This situation necessitates sustained enlightenment of the girl child through the mainstreaming of CSE in the school curriculum.

Comprehensive sexuality education (CSE), as defined by the World Health Organization, provides young people with accurate, age-appropriate information about sexuality and their sexual and reproductive health, which is critical for their health and survival.

The absence of comprehensive sexuality education in the curriculum has left young girls vulnerable to a multitude of challenges. Insufficient knowledge regarding their own bodies, reproductive health (puberty, menstruation, personal hygiene), consent, relationships, and peer pressure leaves them susceptible to sexual and gender-based violence. Alarmingly, without adequate information and life skills, they face higher risks of early marriage, unintended pregnancies, sexually transmitted infections, and exploitation.

In Imo State, the vulnerability of the girl child towards rape, bullying, cyberbullying, incest, and other forms of sexual and gender-based violence cannot be overstated. Girls in our community face unacceptable levels of abuse and discrimination, underscoring the need for urgent action. Comprehensive sexuality education is the foundational step toward creating a safer environment, empowering girls with knowledge, boosting their confidence, and protecting them from the pervasive threat of sexual violence.

In a recent study conducted by Alliances for Africa to assess the level of knowledge of girls about their accurate information on their sexual and reproductive health and rights in the South East, only 10.4% are aware of their sexual and reproductive health and rights, 56.7% are not aware, 29.1% are partially aware, and 3.7% do not have an idea about SRHR.

This data highlights a clear educational gap related to SRHR. It emphasizes the need for comprehensive sexuality education programs in schools and communities to enhance awareness, understanding among girls, and help them make informed decisions.


On this International Day of the Girl Child, Alliances for Africa demands the following:

  • Imo State government should prioritize and integrate comprehensive sexuality education into the school curriculum as a matter of urgency and encourage all systems that promote the same.
  • Ensure that every school in the state has a functional guidance and counselling unit to provide necessary guidance and support to the girls.

These units would offer a safe space for girls to seek guidance on personal issues, mental health, and concerns related to sexuality and reproductive health, fostering a supportive environment that nurtures their growth and well-being.

It is is True! Empowered girls are more likely to assert their rights, resist harmful practices, and contribute positively to their communities.

About Alliances for Africa (AfA):

Alliances for Africa (AfA) is an International African woman-led non-governmental human rights, peace, and sustainable development organization. AfA works with partners in, around, and beyond the continent of Africa, advocating for the protection of human rights, promoting women’s participation in leadership and governance, building institutional capacity, advocating for gender justice, equality, and non-discrimination, as well as promoting peace, security, and conflict resolution interventions.

Ms Iheoma Obibi

Executive Director

Alliances for Africa

Owerri, Imo State


Twitter: http/AfAafrica


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