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Government urged to develop action plans to tackle concerns of children under SDGs

June 26, 2018, 8:59 a.m.

The Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC), a child-centred non-governmental organization (NGO), has underscored the need for the government to develop action plans to tackle the concerns of children under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It has also called on the government and related stakeholder organisations and agencies to broaden opportunities for children’s participation in activities and programmes geared towards the attainment of the SDGs that equally relate to the development of children.

Agents of development

According to CCFC, children are agents and beneficiaries of development; hence, the need to create opportunities for them to express their views and contribute to the attainment of the various SDGs in Africa. The acting Country Director of CCFC, Mr. Kwabena Tutor, made the call at a ceremony in Tamale last Tuesday, June 19, 2018 to mark this year’s International Day of the African Child. The day was celebrated on the theme “Leave no child behind for Africa’s development”.  As part of the celebration, over 300 schoolchildren from selected basic schools led by officers of CCFC and its partners, marched through the principal streets of the Tamale metropolis to create awareness of the need to protect and empower children. Holding placards with inscriptions such as ‘Stop Child Trafficking, Provide quality education for all children’, ‘Treat all children equally’, Let us educate every child’ and ‘Consider the child in decision-making’, they marched from Tamale Jubilee Park, through the Aboabo Market, to the Aliu Mahama Sports Stadium, where they were addressed by the Northern Regional Minister, Mr. Slifu Saeed.

Concerted Efforts

Mr. Tutor called for concerted efforts to help fight for the rights of children in Africa, stressing, “We all have our roles to play- children, parents families, communities and traditional leaders- in the decisions we take today concerning children for their future. “We can work together as a nation to carry along all children to attain agenda 2030 and beyond which will make the future of Africa better.” He also appealed to government to resource various institutions which are mandated to ensure that children were protected to help in the fight against the abuse of the rights of children in the country.

Child poverty

For his part, Mr.Saeed expressed worry about the high rate of child poverty in Africa, in spite of the remarkable progress made by the various stakeholders in addressing the problem. “Child poverty is high in sub-Saharan Africa with two-thirds of children experiencing deprivation of their basic human rights and hunger and poverty denying children he joy of childhood,” he lamented. To this end, he said: “Government has been working hard as part of its determination to meet Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and agenda 2030.” He therefore appealed to traditional rulers to review the customs and traditions that negatively affected the rights of children.

 Source: Daily Graphic (25-06-18)