By Biodun Busari

The violent cases against children in Nigeria increased by 5% between 2016 and 2021 according to the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) developed by the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF).

According to the survey, 90% of children between the ages of 1 to 14 have experienced at least one form of violent discipline by caregivers in 2021 which was 85% in 2016.

The survey published by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Wednesday also revealed that the highest levels of these violent cases were recorded in Cross River and Imo states with 99%.

The lowest level of violent discipline was registered in Sokoto state with 62%.

“Nine out of every ten children aged 1-14 years (90%) are subject to at least one form of violent discipline by caregivers. This is an increase of 5% points from 5 years ago. The lowest level of violent discipline is registered in Sokoto (62%). The highest levels are in Cross River (99%) and Imo (99%),” NBS said.

Meanwhile, child labour was reduced to 19% under the same years reviewed as 50% of children of ages 5 to 17 experienced child labour in 2016 reduced to 30% in 2021.

The survey said, “Three out of every ten children aged 5-17 years (32%) are engaged in child labour. This is a decrease of 19% points from 5 years ago.”

It stated further, “The smallest proportions of children engaged in child labour are found in Lagos (10%) and Ondo (9%). The largest proportions are in Bauchi (55%) and Katsina (50%).”

Recall that Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, on Tuesday officially launched Nigeria’s 2021 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) and National Immunization Coverage Survey (NICS) report, providing reliable nationwide and internationally comparable data to monitor the situation of children and women in Nigeria.

The Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey is a household survey developed by UNICEF to assist countries in filling data gaps for monitoring human development indicators in general and the situation of children and women, in particular.

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