Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu

The Lagos State Government is set to integrate Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) in the curriculum of Non-Formal Vocational Training Schools in order to improve the life of young persons in the state while contributing to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goal target by 2030.

According to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youth and Social Development, Dr. Bola Balogun, sexuality was an important aspect of human life which could not be overemphasized, and that the integration of Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) into the curriculum was important to the wellbeing of human being, noting that this would bring about a life-saving Sexual Reproductive Health Right (SRHR) for young people in the state.

Balogun, who made this known during the Validation/ Advocacy meeting on the Integration of Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) into the curriculum of non-formal vocational training schools, organised by the Ministry in conjunction with UNFPA in Ikeja, said adolescents and young people were the most vulnerable in the society, hence, there was a need to protect them from any form of violence, abuse, exploitation and most especially harmful health consequences of poor sexual and reproductive health decision or choices.

She added that conservative social norms contributed to the lack of knowledge and awareness of puberty, sexuality, and basic human rights among the youths.

While stating the strategy for adolescents to survive, thrive and flourish in the era of globalization, Bolajoko noted that the state government would ensure a universal access to sexual and reproductive health care services to include family planning, information and education and the integration of reproductive health into strategies and programmes of the State.

In her words, “the integration of Sexuality Education will greatly reduce risk and burden of unplanned pregnancies, unsafe abortion, sexual abuse/violence as well as contacting HIV/AIDs amongst the young people while ensuring they reach their maximum potential”.

Bolajoko, however, urged stakeholders, ministries and agencies involved in youth development in the state to contribute meaningfully towards the actualization of the Curriculum Teaching Manual on Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) In Vocational Schools across the State.

The representative of UNFPA, Dr. Esther Somefun stated that Lagos State had once again shown its uniqueness as it was the first state in West Africa that had achieved the feat, adding that the Comprehensive Sexuality Education Curriculum (CSE) was compiled in line with the globally accepted standard.

While thanking all stakeholders who contributed in making the developed curriculum a success, Somefu said the project was made in line with world best practices and would go a long way in educating the Nigerian youths in areas relating to their Sexual Reproductive Health Rights.