The purpose of this study is to identify interpret and understand the effect of the child marriage on girl child with a view to recommending appropriate measure to be taken in order to enhance their welfare in terms of education and thus empower them to become relevant and potential citizens of the contemporary Nigeria. The investigation was conducted solely with the purpose of findings out the attitude of the general public on child marriage of girl-child, the effect of government as per discouraging the practice, the effect of the practice on the nation’s political and economic terrains. The following recommendations were made in this research work, the government should ensure that their programmes on orientation should be properly channeled in order to get to the grassroots, government should introduce on the school curriculum topics on child marriage and its effects on Nigeria child.
1.1 Background of the study
The Right from the beginning of ages, the effect of child marriage on the academic performance of the girl child has been a topic for debate. In 2004, Children’s national Day, the UNICEF in collaboration with the Ministry of Education in Nigeria, had a presentation of statistical result of schooling children to non-schooling children in the contemporary society. the research presentation shows that over 7.2 million Nigerian children are out of school as they engaged themselves in hawking, as maid to people or otherwise. Meanwhile, from the above result, 87% of these children found outside school were girls. In a press briefing organized by the Chairman of National Orientation Agency, Dr. Chukwuemeka Chukwudi the major reasons why more girl child is found outside school was because female children are given out on marriage at an early age range.
It is no longer a matter of argument that females constitute more than fifty percent (50%) of worlds active population (UNESCO, 2008). Although they make immense contribution to national development, they still face a number of difficulties that limit their potentials in promoting personal and collective development. A key area of concern in this regard is that of their education, which can only at best be described as dwindling as and less than equal to that of the male. (Obaya, 2003). The marriage institution is very vital in any society; it’s legitimate in the productive process and ensures the meaningful preparation of the social norm of society. Yet the timing and the resultant impact of child marriage is a source of concern for many who cherish the equitable participation of female in modern education. When girls are married at age of 10 to 14, their educational careers are disrupted especially if an avenue for second chance learning is not provided. Once girls are left behind in this process, they add to the burden of development of the society and their positive roles and contributions are limited early.