Umar Farouk, Speaker of the Gombe State Children’s Parliament, on Tuesday, says
silence over domestication of Child Rights Act is disturbing to children in the state.
Farouk expressed the children’s concern on the sidelines of a roundtable with stakeholders to strengthen the implementation of strategy on ending child marriage in Gombe State.
The meeting was organised and sponsored by Girls Strand Catalyst, U.S.A, in collaboration with Save the Children (SCI), an NGO.
The speaker said he was aware of efforts by the state government to domesticate the act in line with the culture and tradition of people of the state.
He added that “we don’t know the reason for the delay now.”
He noted that some states that started the process of domesticating the act had signed their bill into law “and we the children in Gombe are envious because some states are already implementing the law.”
He said the call for domestication of the act was as a result of the benefits the act would bring in terms of protecting the rights of children in the state.
The speaker explained that the non-domestication of the act in the state was affecting children negatively.
“The presence of the law will provide the needed legal framework to seek justice when the rights of children are denied or abused.
“We are worried because time is of the essence and we don’t know how far the bill has gone and what is going on now.
“The presence of that law will boost the protection of the rights of children and help to reduce the violations being recorded against children in the state,” he added.
On the issue of rape, Farouk appealed to parents to always speak out to relevant authorities whenever their children were abused.
He added that “parents should reduce community settlement on the issue of rape and other abuses against children; they should seek legal backing and rights to protect them.” (NAN)