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Kogi, Niger lead in open defecation in Nigeria – Report

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RESIDENTS of Kogi and Niger states practice open defecation more than other people in Nigeria, the latest Multiple Indication Cluster Surveys (MICS) report shows.

According to the report, more than half of residents in the two states (53 per cent for Kogi and 52 per cent for Niger) defecate in open places.

Kogi has been leading the chart since 2019.

The ICIR reports that the practice is minimal in Zamfara and Lagos states, according to a report of the latest MICS released to journalists on Tuesday in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) and the Child’s Right Information Bureau (CRIB) of the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture released the 2021 MICS report at a two-day media dialogue.

Lagos and Zamfara states have only three and two per cent of their residents doing open defecation.

The report shows a cumulative increase in open defecation in Nigeria within the period under study.

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One in five persons (22 per cent) practices open defecation, an increase of two per cent from 2017, when the last MICS was conducted.

The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) initiated MICS as an in-country programme in the mid-’90s. It is conducted in many countries.

Since its inception, MICS has become the largest source of statistically sound and internationally comparable data on children and women worldwide.

The Nigerian Bureau of Statistics (NBS) coordinates the survey in Nigeria, with funding and technical support from UNICEF, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, GAVI and the Nigerian government.

More findings from the latest MICS

The latest survey shows that more than half of all children under the age of five (57 per cent) have their births registered with civil authorities, an increase of 10 per cent from five years ago.

The highest levels of birth registration are in Lagos (94 per cent) and FCT (87 per cent); the lowest levels are in Jigawa (23.6 per cent) and Sokoto (22.5 per cent).

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Immunization 

Eighteen per cent of children 12 – 23 months old did not receive any vaccinations, a relative decrease of 55 per cent from the last exercise.

The smallest proportions of children who did not receive any vaccinations are in Enugu (one per cent) and Ebonyi (0 per cent). Most children in Sokoto, representing 51 per cent, did not get any vaccination. 

Child Marriage

Three in ten women aged 20-24 years (30 per cent) are married or go into marriage before their 18th birthday, a decrease of 14 per cent from the previous MICS.

The lowest levels of child marriage are in Enugu (four per cent) and Lagos (three per cent). Bauchi, with 74 per cent, and Jigawa, having 72 per cent, parade the highest child marriage rates in the country.

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

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Fifteen per cent of women aged 15 – 49 years have undergone FGM, down from 18 per cent in 2017.

Eight per cent of girls aged 0 – 14 years have undergone FGM, down from 25 per cent in 2016. 

The lowest levels of FGM among women aged 15 – 49 years are in Gombe (0 per cent) and Zamfara (0 per cent). The highest rates are in Kwara (58 per cent) and Ekiti (50 per cent).

Adolescent Birth Rate

The adolescent birth rate is 75 births per 1,000 women aged 15 – 19, a relative decrease of 38 per cent from five years ago.

The lowest adolescent birth rates occur in Lagos (22 per cent) and Anambra (16). The highest rates are in Bauchi (166) and Jigawa (156).

Initial Breastfeeding

Two out of every ten newborns (23 per cent) are breastfed within one hour of birth, a decrease from three out of every ten from five years ago. 

The highest percentage of newborn children breastfed within one hour of birth is in Osun (75 per cent), and the lowest levels are in Jigawa (eight per cent) and Imo (seven per cent).

Child Labour

Three out of every ten children aged between five and 17 years (32 per cent) are engaged in child labour, a decrease of 19 per cent from the last survey.

The smallest proportions of children engaged in child labour are in Lagos (10 per cent) and Ondo (nine per cent). The largest proportions are in Bauchi (55 per cent) and Katsina (50 per cent).

Violent Discipline

Nine out of every ten children aged one – 14 years (90 per cent) are subject to at least one form of violent discipline by caregivers, representing an increase of five per cent from five years ago.

The lowest level of violent discipline is in Sokoto (62 per cent). The highest levels are in Cross River (99 per cent).

Education

Among children and adolescents aged seven – 14 years, only 27 per cent have foundational reading skills, and only 25 per cent have foundational numeracy skills. 

Ekiti and Imo have the lowest out-of-school rates of two and one per cent, respectively, while Kebbi (65 per cent), Zamfara (61 per cent) and Bauchi (61 per cent) have the highest rates.

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