Practice Relating to Rule 135. Children
In 2008, in its combined third and fourth periodic reports to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, Nigeria stated:
The armed conflicts in Sierra Leone and Liberia caused an influx of refugees into Nigeria, the bulk of them are women and children. The National Commission for Refugees (NCR) maintains a camp in Oru, Ogun State where educational … facilities have been provided for children.
… Refugee children enjoy equal rights as nationals with regards to all the rights enshrined in the CRC [1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child], for instance:
Refugee children have access to existing primary and post primary schools. Public schools are free for refugees. Refugee children also have access to extra curricula activities such as sports and cultural activities … A day care centre is also established for over 200 refugee children who were not of primary school age.
Nigeria further stated:
The following steps are being taken at all levels of government to stamp out discrimination:
- Schools for refugees and displaced children have been established in the border towns of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Bauchi and Ogun States.
[C]hildren's right – in particular girls’ – to quality education in war and disasters is a vital part of protecting children during conflict. Attending school can create a sense of normality and a vision for a better future in an otherwise chaotic situation. It is therefore all the more disturbing that there were attacks on education facilities in at least 70 countries in 2009-2013. Since then it has just escalated in a number of conflicts. We must increase our efforts to uphold the right to education, even in conflict situations. … The Safe Schools Declaration expresses a commitment to protect education from attack. It merits our full consideration and we hope that it will be endorsed by as many as possible.