By J. K. Nabary, GNA
Ekumfi Techiman (C/R) July 15, GNA - Ms Eunice Ananah, Plan-Ghana Central Programme Unit Child Ambassador has called on Governments, International Institutions and communities to use the African Union (AU) Day of the Child celebrations to review their commitment towards the plight of marginalized and vulnerable children.
Ms. Ananah made the call at a forum organized at Ekumfi Techiman in Central Region by Plan-International Ghana, an independent non-profit development and humanitarian organization, which strives for a just world that advances children’s rights and equality for girls.
The programme was in remembrance of hundreds of school children, who took to the streets of Soweto, South Africa, to protest against the inferior quality of their education and to demand the rights to be taught in their mother language but were massacred by security forces.
The commemoration of the Day therefore was also an opportunity to focus on the work of all actors who are committed to upholding the rights of children on the African continent and to support their efforts in addressing the obstacles for realizing the rights of the child.
Ms. Ananah suggested that it should not just be a commemoration day, but draw the attention of all actors involved in improving the condition of the children on the African Continent and to unite their efforts to combat the ills which plagued daily, the life of the African child.
The Children’s Act 1998, Act 560 section eight states the child’s Right to education and wellbeing, with emphasis that no person shall be deprived access to education, immunization, adequate diet, clothing among other things, required for his or her development.
“But what do we see in our dear African countries, children are being denied quality education, government past and present preach about education and quality education but nothing concrete has been done”.
She said children are looking for technological change in the education system to teach them to be critical and logical thinkers but not “chew and pour”, adding that, it was time for Africans to relook its educational system and tailor courses and subjects which will address future problems.
The child she noted, should be given the right to express their opinion, be listened to and to participate in decisions which affected their wellbeing, to give weight to the opinion of the child in accordance with age and maturity.
Mr. Bernard Bright-Grant, District Chief Executive, Mrs. Dorcas Linda Asare, Education Director for Ekumfi and Nana Kwnunu IV, Nyifahen of Ekumfi Techiman Traditional area who chaired the programme, were among other speakers who applauded Plan International-Ghana for its good works to ensure that children lived healthy lives and access quality education in a clean environment.
They stressed the need for all stakeholders in the grooming of the child, especially parents, to effectively contribute their quota in the fight against child abuse and support their empowerment.
Earlier in the day, school children from the Plan Ghana Central Unit went on a float with placards some of which read, “involve us in decision making, respect our views and opinions, discrimination against children must stop, avoid sexual violence against children and ensure equal education for boys and girls”.
A football match between Ekumfi Techiman Girls and Effutu Osubonpanyin Girls Teams saw Osubonpanyin girls defeating Techiman Girls by three goals to one to commemorate the Day.