Adolescent 360, others corrupting teenage girls, MURIC warns
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has raised the alarm over the activities of some online projects and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) that expose teenage girls to immorality.Worried by the activities, which it described as wicked, the faith-based group alerted parents to the danger posed by these online projects.
In a statement yesterday, the group listed Adolescent 360 and 9ja Girls among such projects.The director, Professor Ishaq Akintola, said the nation’s youths were being corrupted and wondered what would become of a nation whose future mothers were being encouraged to think little of general promiscuity and marital infidelity.
The statement reads: “MURIC wishes to alert parents to the danger posed by these online projects which, ostensibly, are for economic empowerment of teenage girls, but are actually exposing the girls to corruption. Adolescent 360 is executed as 9ja Girls for unmarried girls in Southern Nigeria and as Matasa Matan Arewa (MMA) in Northern Nigeria for married adolescent girls.
“Under the guise of giving vocational training to teenage girls, sex and sexuality are actively encouraged. According to the website of Adolescent 360, the project ‘aims to increase voluntary, modern contraceptive use and reduce unintended pregnancy among girls between the ages of 15 and 19 in Ethiopia, Nigeria and Tanzania’. Adolescent 360 is a baby of an international NGO, Population Services International (PSI).
“As for the 9ja Girls project, its website says, ‘When a girl walks into a 9ja Girls space, she feels emboldened. Inside, amid affirming notes from girls, glittery walls, and caring health workers, she can learn a new trade, have an honest Q&A about her body and feelings, and even take up a contraceptive method – all of this discreetly and on her terms.’
“In essence, our teenage girls are being ‘emboldened’ to make dangerous sexual moves and to have premarital sex as under-aged girls under the guise of vocational training. Parents are deceived into releasing their teenage girls, thinking that such girls are going for some training that will add value to their lives. ”
Unknown to such parents, their under-aged daughters are being initiated into the world of sexual recklessness. It is a betrayal of trust. It is atrocious, outrageous and insidious.”
The Islamic rights organisation called the attention of the Ministry of Youth, Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health to the ugly phenomenon and reminded the education ministry that the Society for Family Health (SFH) brought the Zip Up project for 15 to 19-year-olds around 2004, ostensibly to promote abstinence. It was on the basis of the Zip Up project that the ministry later decided to partner with SFH.