16 -year-old Pakistani girl child education activist Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by the Taliban militants in Pakistan for advocating girls’ right to education, has donated all the proceeds from the sale of her portrait to Nigerian charities focused on education and advocacy for girls and women.
Speaking at the auction in New-York, Malala said:
“I am very concerned about these innocent girls — my sisters — whose only crime was going to school and learnings. I was shocked and saddened when I heard about the abduction of more than 200 girls by terrorists in Nigeria. ..
“I am very concerned about these innocent girls, my sisters, whose only crime was going to school and learning. I believe it is our duty to stand together in solidarity with their parents, families and relatives. We all have a voice and we must speak up and call on the international community and the government of Nigeria to intervene and bring these girls back to their homes safely. Together we can create a world where no child will be out of school and no student will fear for her or his safety.”
The painting was done in 2013 by leading British artist Jonathan Yeo and shows Malala after she started attending a school in Birmingham, England, where she now lives and the portrait fetched $102,500 (N16.4m) at an auction on Wednesday in New York.