Community durbar marks global event against child labour
The Christian Children's Fund of Canada (CCFC), a child-centred non-governmental organisation (NGO), in collaboration with other protection NGOs working in the Northern Region, has organised a community durbar in the Savelugu Municipality to mark this year's International Day Against Child Labour.
The durbar was to sensitise parents, traditional authorities and the general public to the dangers and consequences of the continuous use of children for hazardous work that denied them of their rights to education and health, as well as the opportunity to realise their future dreams.
In some parts of the Northern Region, some parents continue to use their children for farming and that denied them access to education, while some give out the hands of the daughters in marriages and as house helps. Others also push their children to the urban centres to operate as head potters, popularly known as " Kayayei" all in the name of poverty and ignorance.
The durbar was organised in collaboration with World Vision, the Departments of Children and Labour and some child-centred NGOs, namely: RAINS, Campaign for Female Education (CAMFED), Songtaba and Rights To Play.
Speaking at the durbar, the Country Director of CCFC, Mr George Baiden, said according to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), millions of children around the world were trapped in child labour, depriving them of their childhood, their health and education and condemning them to a life of poverty and want.
Ghana News Headlines
For latest news in Ghana, visit Graphic Online news headlines page Ghana news page
He added that it was estimated that there were 15.5 million child domestic workers worldwide most of who are girls who are often hardly visible and face many hazards.
" The continuing persistence of child labour poses a threat to national economy and tend to have severe negative short and long-term consequences for the fulfilment of children's rights guaranteed by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC)," Mr Baiden stated.
He commended other partners in the region for their support in combating child marriages, violence against children, child abuse and all forms of maltreatment of children, including using them for hazardous work.
The Northern Regional acting Operations Manager for World Vision, Mr Felix Apeti, for his part, quoted an International Labour Organisation (ILO) statistics that indicate that 168 million children are engaged in child labour and work under dangerous hazardous environment, with little or no protection, exposing them to injuries, toxic substances and all forms of physical and emotional abuses.
He pledged the commitment of his organisation towards the welfare of children and the protection of their rights, adding that they would continue to invest in children to ensure a brighter future for them and the country.
Appeal/Commitment of stakeholders
In a statement, Ms Sarafina Akisicchab, who is named by child rights advocates as the Pong Tamale Child Member of Parliament, called on the international community to help end child labour in all its forms.
She also called on stakeholders to work on legislation to protect children from child labour and all forms of violence against children.
Some parents and stakeholders at the durbar pledged their commitment towards the protection of children, particularly females, from early and forced marriages and labour.
Some pupils and students of the Pong Tamale Experimental School staged a drama to call for the protection of children against early marriage and all negative acts that jeopardised the future of children.