By Ige Adekunle
Prof. Patrick Edewor of the Department of Sociology, Covenant University, Ota, has advised government at all levels to invest in girl-child education in order to reduce fertility and stem the rate of population growth in the country.
Edewor gave the advice at the 16th Inaugural Lecture organised by Covenant University in Ota, on Friday, September 28, 2018.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the lecture was tagged “Be Fruitful, Multiply and Replenish the Earth: The Motivation, The Costs and the Gains.”
According to him, the micro and macro-societal levels, prolific childbearing, high fertility and rapid population growth are disadvantageous, especially to Nigeria and Africa countries who are growing at a slowing pace.
The don noted that the continued high population growth rate and high fertility rate in Nigeria and Africa had undermined the best efforts at improving the quality of life.
“High fertility is associated with poverty and where there is poverty, there will be high fertility.
“And with high fertility, there will be a preponderance of young persons which will lead to high dependency burden.
“High dependency burden will lead to low propensity to save, which will, in turn, lead to low investments.
“Low investments will lead to the low capital formation which will create unemployment and eventually lead to poverty,” he said.
He noted that education was the best contraceptives because it will raise the age of the female and change the lifestyles as well as the world-view of men and women.
The don, further, said that education would cause couples to become knowledgeable about family planning techniques and alter traditional high fertility norms.
Edewor also suggested that a vigorous pursuit of girl-child education, particularly in the northern geopolitical zones coupled with social and economic development, was the only way to reduce rapid population growth.
Edewor listed some of the effects of rapid population growth and high fertility rate to include poverty, famine, high rate of unemployment, high rate of overcrowding and high rate of crime but to mention few of them.
Prof. Aaron Atayero, the Vice-Chancellor of the Covenant University, stressed the need for the nation and other African countries to check rapid population growth and fertility rate in order to harness their potentials.
Atayero, who was represented by Prof. Akan Williams, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the institution, said that rapid population growth has adverse effects on any country’s development.
Every nation should strive towards achieving an optimum population that would guarantee the maximum welfare of the citizens of that country, given its resource.” he said.