While delivering a presentation on child marriage in Abuja, the UNICEF Gender and Development specialist, Venera Zakirova has disclosed that the United Nation Children Fund (UNICEF) at the weekend revealed that over 0.4 to 0.8million women suffer from obstetric fistula (OF) in Nigeria, ranking the country as highest prevalence of Obstetric Fistula in the world. According to her, “unfortunately OF is mostly as a result of early marriages forced on adolescent girls who have not fully developed to handle the rigorous exercise of delivery.”About 20,000 new cases of OF occur annually and 90% of these cases go untreated,
making the women or girls go through discrimination by suffering hard delivery, death of their babies or end up with OF and be ostracized by her family and communities”. Earlier the representative of UN Women at the function, Desmond Osemeje also noted that November 25, 2016 commences a 16 day activism against gender based violence which will last until December 10, 2016.
The Editor in chief Africa Development Information, Rotimj Sankore speaking on the negative impact of child marriage said 43% of girl children are subjected to child marriage.
He added that child marriage is the biggest reason why girls drop out of schools widening the gender inequality gaps.