On Thursday, the head of UNESCO-Audrey Azoulay said during his visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo said that eleven million girls will not be returning back to their schools even once the COVID-19 restrictions are lifted across the world.
As per reports, Azoulay said “We worry that in many countries the closure of schools has unfortunately led to losses,” as she visited a high school in the capital Kinshasa, three days after the country’s 2020-21 school year began.
“We estimate that 11 million girls will be unable to go back to school around the world.”
Accordingly, “we have launched an awareness drive on the need for schools to go back to school,” the former French culture minister said.
Congolese Education Minister Willy Bakonga, accompanying Azoulay, urged her to support the country’s program of free public primary education launched by President Felix Tshisekedi in September last year.
He said the program had allowed more than four million children to join or rejoin the education system in the poor but mineral-rich Central African country.
Asking girls to pursue their schooling “as long as possible”, she said she would support the Congolese authorities in the “massive effort that must be made for the quality of teaching”.
Experts estimate the annual cost of free primary education at $2.64 billion, a colossal sum for the Democratic Republic of Congo.