The government in Boko Haram’s home state in northeastern Nigeria has pledged to provide free nursery and primary school education for 23,000 children orphaned by the insurgency.
Boko Haram’s six-year insurgency—which began in 2009 in Maiduguri, in the northeastern Borno state—has killed more than 17,000 people and internally displaced more than 2 million Nigerians. The militant group has forced 1.4 million children to flee their homes, a UNICEF report said in September 2015, and Boko Haram—which pledged allegiance to the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) in March 2015—has recruited children to fight as soldiers in its ranks.
Ahmed Satomi, the chairman of Borno’s State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), said on Sunday that scholarships would be provided for children living in Internally Displaced Person (IDP) camps in the state who had no one to sponsor their education. Satomi also said that counseling and other forms of psychosocial support were being provided for the orphans. “The children are all Boko Haram victims; some of their parents were killed while some of them had fled without any traces,” said Satomi.
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