EFFECT OF GENDER DISCRIMINATION ON GIRL CHILD EDUCATION IN ABRAKA, ETHIOPE EAST LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA OF DELTA STATE
The study examined gender
discrimination and girl child education in Abraka, Ethiope East L.G.A of Delta
State. The descriptive survey method was adopted for the study. The respondents
consist or comprised of a sample size of 120 male and female teachers from a
population of 604 across 10 schools. A questionnaire was constructed and
designed by the researcher with a validity index of 0.86 for data collection
from which the data obtained was subjected to statistical analysis using mean
and standard deviation. Results obtained revealed that the level of awareness
on gender discrimination in Abraka is alarming as majority of the girls are
often treated as inferior. Hence, the findings of this study indicated that
there is significant relationship between the societal beliefs and girl child
education in Abraka. In addition, it was revealed that discrimination against
the girl child education occurs mostly in rural society. More so, factors
affecting the girl child’s participation in education in Abraka include; early
marriage, cultural issues, domestic violence, teenage pregnancy and religious
bias. Effect of gender discrimination of the girl child in societal development
results to dropout, mental health, inadequate women, teacher’s poor academic
performance and deprived access education for girl child.
Education is an important foundation to improve the
status of women and has been recognized as a potent and dynamic instrument for
national development and social transformation. In every civilized society and
especially in the African context, children are regarded as the pride of
parents and the greatest value the society possesses. This is why children are
mostly cherished and consciously protected from all forms of hazards and abuse.
According to Obanya (2007) the girl-child educational attainment is low as
records have shown that fewer girls go to school than boys. Offorma, (2009)
noted that this is because the girl-children have not been so lucky to be
cherished, protected and loved in Nigerian society due to certain traditional
practices, stereotyping, cultural and religious beliefs which put them at the
risk of abuse and neglect.
Gender inequality, discrimination and violence are
anathema to human existence, healthy relationships and development. The issue
of discrimination against the girl-child has remained an unresolved issue and a
major concern in the academic discourse. Igube, (2004) and Asare (2009) noted
that the general inferior economic, social and political status of the
girl-child while recent studies are also showing the state of her existence
from the formative-infancy stage through youth to the adult stage. More so,
gender discrimination against the girl child education is contrary to
fundamental human rights, equity, natural justice and good governance.
Section 42 of the constitution of the Federal
Republic of Nigeria, 1999 provides for freedom from discrimination on the
grounds of ethnic group, origin, gender, religion, circumstances of birth,
disability or political opinion. Unfortunately, gender discrimination on girl
child’s education permeates every facet and this comes in several forms
Nigerian society including Abraka community. Abraka is one
of the 25 Urhobo kingdoms
located in Ethiope East Local Government Delta state, Nigeria. It has five different
villages namely; Oria, Urhuagbesa, Umeghe, Oteri and
Otorho- Avwraka. Meanwhile, Abraka is mostly known as a
university town and has three campuses situated there. Abraka town is a
favorite destination for domestic and international tourists.
Forms of gender discriminatory practices and
violence against girl child’s education in Abraka geographical location
includes; female genital mutilation, child marriage, ritualistic widowhood
practices, nutritional taboos, cult prostitution, domestic violence and sexual
freedom for husbands. Possible factors that predispose the situation are;
traditional land tenure systems and patterns of inheritance, lack of access to
credit, family preference for sons, lack of participation in public decision-making,
discrimination in housing and employment, religious practices as well as
incidence of rape, battery, trafficking in girl child and induced prostitution.
Fisho-Orideji, (2001) affirmed that the girl-child
problem around the world has many dimensions but the root of all kinds of
discriminations and bias against the girl child lies in the customs, traditions
and typical mindset of the society which considers the girl child and women as
inferior beings. Women and girls have been treated in the most inhuman ways
from the inception of human civilization. Whereas, Igube, (2004) believes that
the legacy of injustice against the girl child has continued in some parts of
the world especially in African and Asian countries where there is frequent
female feticide, female infanticide, sexual abuse, marginalization in terms of
nutrition, health care and education challenge for the girl child. There would
therefore be no gain saying that violence against women and bias against women
in all spheres of life including; social, political, economic and religious
sphere is a common norm in today’s world (Alabi & Alabi, 2012).
Guttman, (2009) noted that the effect on gender
discrimination of the girl child’s education remains that, half of the total
sexual assaults in the world are committed against girl children just as
Fisho-Orideji, (2001) stated that, one of the leading causes of death among
girl children is the complication from pregnancy and child bearing. Thus,
improving basic education, especially female education, has a powerful
influence on both mortality and fertility in Nigeria. This study therefore
seeks to examine the effect of gender discrimination on girl-child education in
Abraka Ethiope East LGA of Delta State
is light and this light is indispensable especially in this fast changing
world. Education is said to be the only way a third world country like Nigeria
can become developed. Education is very essential in today’s society and the
girl child must be educated in order to have a bright future. Part of the
fundamental human rights of a child is the right to education. There are many
factors that militate against the girl-child education.
In some Nigerian
societies; they believe that it is an abomination to educate a female. Their
beliefs are that women are supposed to be good cooks and mothers. Hence,
education of the girl child is seen as a threat to male chauvinism. Some men
believe that once the girl child is educated, she will be difficult to control
and she could become loose, immoral and promiscuous. Consequently, the society
in most cases sees the girl-child as a second fiddle; as a result, little or no
effort is made towards her education especially when the parents are made to
make a choice between educating the male-child and the girl-child.
Most of the common
discrimination that appear to threaten the female gender include: The belief that men are stronger than women,
the belief that education of women is a waste of resources, the belief that men
are the bread winners, the belief that the male child will be a support for
parents in the old age, the belief is that the gild child will eventually marry
and ‘come under’ their husbands hence they are treated as inferior.
Furthermore, to perpetuate the superiority of the male child over the
girl-child, the girl-child is trained to put herself below her male siblings.
In some homes, in order to make up for the financial inadequacy of the family,
the girl-child is sent out to hawk in order to raise money for the family
needs. In some cases, the girl-child may be given off for domestic labour in
urban area for a regular income to the family (Ezeliora and Ezeokana, 2011).
These traditional practices/beliefs
impose a lot of restrictions on the female gender education. It is regrettable
that despite our progress as a society there is still an underestimation of the
value of the girl-child. The psychological effect of gender discrimination and
socio-cultural beliefs on the girl-child is the internalization of the low
value accorded them by society. Hence, this study therefore seeks to ascertain
the effects of gender discrimination on girl child education in Abraka, Ethiope
East Local Government area of Delta State.
The purpose of this study is to
examine the effect of gender discrimination on girl child education in Abraka,
Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State. Specifically, the objectives
To find out the
level of awareness on gender discrimination with regards to the girl child
education in Abraka, Ethiope East LGA
to examine if
there is any significant relationship between the societal beliefs and the girl
child education in Abraka, Ethiope East
To examine the factors affecting the girl child’s participation in
education in Abraka, Ethiope East LGA
To evaluate the effect of gender discrimination of the girl child on
societal development in Abraka, Ethiope East LGA
the purpose of this study, the following research questions have been
What is the
level of awareness on gender discrimination of the girl child education in Abraka, Ethiope East LGA?
To what extent
do societal beliefs affect the girl child’s education in Abraka, Ethiope East LGA?
What are the factors affecting the girl child’s participation in
education in Abraka, Ethiope East LGA?
What effect does gender discrimination of the girl child have on the
societal development in Abraka Ethiope East LGA?
view of the apparent danger of gender-role discrimination and socio-cultural
beliefs that work against the female gender education there is great need to
address the problem through the research outcome from this study. It will help to educate the public to shed
off negative attitude against female gender education while helping the society
to create and reinforce gender stereotypes and give way to a new mind-set and a
change in attitude in both male and females.
findings of the study would be helpful to the school management in assessing
the enrolment of the girl child into the school, punctuality of the girl child
and the monitoring of the girl child’s performance so as to encourage
subsequent increase in the rate of the girl child’s attendance to school.
Furthermore, the study would help parents, government, policy makers,
international organizations and NGOs to boost female education.
study is focused on examining the effect of gender discrimination on girl child
education in Abraka, Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State. The
study is delimited to public and private primary school teachers in Abraka,
Ethiope East LGA of Delta State. These categories of respondents were chosen
because the primary school is the starting point of education and if a girl
child does not acquire the basic education in this sector, she will not be able
to proceed into the secondary school sector. The study will also be delimited
to selected schools in Ethiope East Local Government Area. The use of
questionnaire was used in gathering data from the respondents as well as
frequency counts and percentages was used for analyzing the data generated.