*stakeholders on child’s rights raises alarm
By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Stakeholders on Child’s rights in Oyo stayte on Friday alerted that child exploitation, abuse and violence including rape is fast becoming a pandemic which may soon have devastating effect on the society.
The stakeholders raised the alarm in Ibadan in a communique issued at the end of a two days annual Stakeholders Conference on Child’s Rights organised by Justice Development and Peace Commission, (JDPC).
According to the stakeholders, the time has come for stiffer punishments for offenders of any acts of violence against women and the child especially rape , adding “all forms of exploitation of children including child trafficking and labour, child sexual abuse, killings of women and children and issues of insecurity generally should be fought by all”
The stakeholders while tracing “child labour and all forms of exploitation of children to family and societal neglect, stressed that exploitation of children, abuse and violence were as a result of lack of implementation of available laws, adding that there is the need for an holistic approach with collective responses of all stakeholders at all levels, including the family, community and the government.
Emphasizing that the menace of child labour, child sexual abuse, insecurity and killings can only be curbed by social protection, the stakeholders called for the enforcement and implementation of legal framework against child trafficking, labour and violence, while cases must be reported and followed withsensitization and enlightenment on the content of relevant laws to protect children, women and everybody generally must reach everyone, including at the local levels.Inclusion of Childs rights law into the school curriculum as one of the compulsory textbooks is more than needed.
The stakeholders in the communique emphasized the need for government to include sex education in the nation’s education system, saying, “Sex education should be embedded in the school curriculum “.
Also advocating the domestication of more family courts to prosecute offenders of child rights and abuse, the stakeholders called for the re- introduction of Children’s Parliament to enforce the content of Childs Rights Law of Oyo State 2006.
“There is need for Creation of Oyo State Child Protection Policy should be given adequate attention in order to ensure their rights are not trampled upon. Constant gathering of intelligences to attend to the cases of insecurity. Creation of Community Watch alert system for immediate community response” .
The stakeholders then cautioned that”people should shun being alone in deserted areas, people should start moving out in twos” and that
association of landlords in all the 33LGAs in Oyo state should commence house to house inspection for porosity identification as well as ensuring total overhauling of the system beginning homes and whistle blowing should be more effective on child rights violations and abuse.