Women Education: Importance for Reduced Infant/Child Mortality Rate and National Development
The paper attempts to expose the crucial role of women education in national development with particular reference to infant and child mortality reduction in Nigeria. This is against the backdrop of consistently high infant/child mortality rates in Nigeria over the years. The concepts of education and national development are well-articulated. The paper critically looks at the status and nature of infant, under-5 and child mortality in Nigeria and highlights their spatial variation which of course, is being shaped by corresponding spatial variations in mother educational attainment. In buttressing the inverse relationship between mother education and child mortality, the paper exposes/reviews insights from the theoretical and empirical linkages (or pathways) between increasing mother education and reduced infant and child mortality in the literature. The paper believes that to ensure continuity in reduction in infant/child mortality in Nigeria now and in the near future, every female child, both rural and urban, from poor and rich homes, should be educated preferably to post-secondary level. The paper concludes that women education is a veritable medium for reducing infant and child mortality in Nigeria, and recommends for proactive stance from all stakeholders in the drive to boost female education enrolment/attainment in Nigeria which should include revamping the school meal program of government; strengthening the adult education program of government; making our education qualitative at all level; and ensuring that females who attended post-secondary education secure formal sector employment.
Women Education, Infant and Child Mortality, National Development
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