Collective efforts needed to safeguard child rights – Dept. of Children

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The Department of Children under the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection (MGCSP) has called for a collective efforts in protecting and securing the future of all children, especially girls to prevent them from abuse.

Ms Ivy Amartey, acting Central Regional Director of the Department who made the call, said violence against children were widespread, persistent and devastating human rights violations, which remained largely unreported mainly due to the impunity, silence, stigma and shame surrounding it.

For that reason, it was incumbent on every caring citizen to report cases of impunity to the appropriate agencies to ensure that the law took its course.

“This will help tackle the scourge of impunity in such cases in our communities, as social justice is a prime necessity in any society to function properly.”

The Gender and Child Rights Activist, made the appeal in her welcoming address at the Central Regional Child Protection Committee quarterly meeting organized by the Department of Children in Cape Coast.

The engagement afforded various stakeholders the opportunity to exchange ideas, and update members on their activities towards child protection in the Region.

Participants were among others drawn from the MGCSP, Department of Social Welfare and Community Development, Regional Coordinating Council, Ghana Police Service and the Ghana Health Service.

Others are Ghana Education Service, Ghana Federation of Persons with Disabilities, Narcotics Control Board, and Non-Governmental Organisations, traditional and religious leaders and the media.

Ms Amartey who took the participants through the categories of child protection and family welfare cases, stating that violence against women and children in particular, continued to be an obstacle to achieving equality, development, peace as well as fulfilment of women and child rights.

She urged child rights organisations to whip up sensitisation on the promotion and protection of the rights of children as well as in the awareness creation towards citizen-participation in the promotion and protection of the rights of children.

Detective Sergeant Richard Boadi-Twum of the Central Region office of the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU), appealed to the Ghana Health Service and the Department of Birth and Death Registry to streamline children’s documentation processes, particularly birth certificates to ease the prosecution of injustices meted out to children.

According to DOVVSU, many parents have misplaced the birth certificates or weighing cards of their children, which were essential to prove children’s date of birth in court.

He said often, parents of victims of sex abuse and other related abuses, relied on birth certificates issued at birth, but little did they know that that certificate legally expired after 12-months.

The anomaly, Detective Sergeant Boadi-Twum indicated had become a serious impediment to seeking justice for some children, especially the girl-child, in cases of defilement.

He was also alarmed at the rate of defilements in the Region and advised men not to estimate a girl’s age by looking at her body mass.

“Sometimes the body features of some young girls deceive some men to force them into unlawful sex and marriage to the detriment of their education”.

Mr Boadi-Twum underlined the need for stakeholders to continue to sensitise males to help them understand their roles and how they could support efforts at reducing sexual and gender based violence and teenage pregnancies to optimise the potential of both males and females.

Parents were also encouraged to be friends with their children to encourage free flow of information between them, adding that, “unfriendly parents sometimes make their children to become rebellious and keep matters to themselves.”

Mr Martin Datsomor with the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), advised parents not to shirk their parental responsibilities towards their children, but work to provide them with the basic necessities to promote their well-being.

News Ghana, Latest Updates and Breaking News of Ghana, GNA,

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