The Chairman of the association, Dr Dorothy Nnaji, made the call at a ceremony marking the 2021 International Day of the Girl Child, in Owerri, on Thursday.
Nnaji said this was the foundation of the fight against poverty, squalor and dehumanisation of humanity
She noted that the belief in some quarters that it was unnecessary to educate girls was not only a perversion of reality, but a “jaundiced perception that stagnated generations.”
The chairman stated that every form of development of the girl child must be premised on proper education and enlightenment, noting that the theme of the 2021 celebration reinforced the fact that the education of the girl-child had to reflect the contemporary age for full integrated development.
She appealed to government at all levels to provide enabling facilities in localities, power supply and data for access to global information, to encourage their relevance in the digital age.
“Every form of development of the girl-child must be premised on proper education and enlightenment, and that is the connector to a developed society.
“I, therefore, call for the abrogation of all inhibiting factors militating against the proper education of the girl child.
“This is the foundation of the fight against poverty, squalor and dehumanisation of humanity; if we must escape from the global index of poverty, the girl-child must be the centre of concern,” she said.
She also urged girls to embrace education, attain enviable academic heights and escape from the shadows of subjugation.
“You can be medical doctors, engineers, media experts, ICT experts, robotics engineers, pilots, political gladiators, architects, lawyers, and all manner of professionals.
“As a female, your potentials are not limited, rather vast options abound. Do well to choose right and make your future enviable and never yield to the perverted thinking of the past”, the NAWOJ chair said.
She further called for good cultural orientation to enable girls differentiate between right and harmful cultural practices, such as female genital mutilation.
The NAWOJ chairperson further called on traditional rulers to always promote girl’s rights and fight against practices that undermine the integrity and rights of the female gender, including obnoxious cultural practices.
Also speaking at the event, the representative of Njaba state constituency, at the Imo House of Assembly, Mrs Uju Onwudiwe, advised the girls at the event to conduct themselves appropriately.
She also urged them to speak up and report cases of sexual abuse, while assuring them that their rights would be protected by the recently passed Violence Against Person’s Prohibitions (VAPP) law, in the state.
She further advised them against giving up on their dreams and aspirations for any reason, saying that they can achieve whatever they desired. (NAN)