Stakeholders task govt on child rights Act implementation
GOVERNMENTS at all levels have been urged to put modalities in place for the establishment of law enforcement agency to tackle child rights infringements.
Nigeria is one of the countries that have adopted the Child Rights Act but so far, no fewer than 28 states in the country have signed adopted this law.
Speaking in Abuja during the yearly award presentation for essay writing competition among secondary school girls organised by Monu-Olarewaju Foundation, Coordinator, Society Against Prostitution and Child Labour in Nigeria (SAP-CLN), Dr. Grace Adogo alleged that the Act has been neglected by states.
“We are amazed that most of the states in the federation have not passed the Child Rights Act into law and even the states that have passed it into law have not implemented it. This is because we see most of the children being sent by their parents to hawk on the street.
“The Federal Government should set up law enforcement agency that will proactively enforce this law on them so that these girls are not wasted on the street or fall into trap of being use to fulfill devil’s agenda,” Adogo said.
According to her, “if you look at the recent trend adopted by terrorists in suicide bombing, you will understand that the girl child is an endangered specie since since 70 per cent of suicide bombers are under aged girls.
She said: “Policies should be formulated to encourage the education of a girl child as a gateway to national development.
“Skills acquisition should become a key element in the development of the girl child. As a young girl growing up after post-secondary school, the girl child should be enrolled in a skill acquisition centre to develop her capacity, while waiting to further her education.
“If we, as a nation are serious about developing the potential of the girl child, then we really need to work collectively on the above.”
Founder, Monu-Olarewaju Foundation, Mrs. Chinwe Olarewaju, said the importance of girl-child education cannot be over emphasised, adding that, “girl-child education has become a major issue of concern in most developing countries of the world today, especially in sub-Saharan Africa where a large number of girls do not attend school.”
Olarewaju who recognized that most educational policies in different states in Nigeria have arrangements that provide free education for girls up to the level of university level, noted that this is not enough as the education of some of these girls is truncated along the way due to cultural values, religious misinterpretation, poverty and illiteracy among others.
She said that the foundation is committed to employing every possible means to encourage girl-child education in the country.
“In 2013, the foundation went round 34 states and the FCT Abuja with the exception of Borno and Yobe States due to insurgency in those areas to pay a visit to our initial beneficiaries and hand over to them cash grants of N50, 000 each along with reading materials. As I speak to you now, we have about 52 girls, and we intend to double their number before the end of this year, God willing.” She said.
The essay competition was organised in 34 states and the FCT, during the 2014 and 2015 editions.
The 1st position of the 2014 edition went to Osifo Osayaba Jacynta from Edo state and she went home with a mini laptop, writing materials and a sum of N80, 000, while the second position was clinched by Ramatu Adamu, the third position, by Joy Ayam.
In the 2015 edition Aisha Abdullahi came first, Enormous Mary came second and Halima Ibrahim came third.
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