ASSEMBLY COMMEMORATES WORLD DAY AGAINST CHILD LABOUR

childLEDZOKUKU – KROWOR MUNICIPAL ASSEMBLY COMMEMORATES WORLD DAY AGAINST CHILD LABOUR In late 2000, a BBC documentary reported on the use of enslaved children in the production of cocoa in West Africa and Ghana was identified to be among these countries. Consequently Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire among other affected countries were asked to voluntarily sign a protocol negotiated by Tom Harkin and Eliot Engel known as the Harkin-Engel protocol in order to stop the world from boycotting the purchase of their cocoa. From the year 2002, the world started the commemoration of The World Day Against Child Labour on the 12th of June every year. It was instituted by the International LabourOrganisation and it aimed at raising awareness and activism to prevent child labour. The global theme for this year’s celebration was “Extend Social Protection, Combat Child Labour”, while the national theme was “Combating Child Labour in Ghana through Effective Social Protection”. It is however an inevitable fact that there are so many forms of child labour depending on the part of the country one is looking at. For instance there is a problem of the use of children in fishing along the coast and the use of children in rice farming in northern part of the country as well. LEKMA joined the rest of the country and the world at large to mark the day at the Nungua Traditional Council. Students from first and second cycle institutions in the Municipality, women groups including market women and other faith based associations were all in attendance to mark the day. Speeches were read from arepresentative of the Municipal Heath Director, Municipal Social Welfare Officer and the Education Unit on the need to curb the menace of child labour. Of utmost concern to all the speakers was the use of children in fishing since the Municipality is a coastal zone and also the use of children in hawking on the street. Madam Clara Sowah, the Municipal Social Welfare Officer explained that according to the laws of Ghana a child is any person below the age of fifteen (15) years. She also sounded a note of warning to all adults within the Municipality who would be found culpable of any of such offencesas in abusing children and involving them in hazardous work would hence forth be dealt with according to what the law and Children’s Act stipulates. Poetry recitals, cultural display and a drama performed by the schools on the consequences of child labour all unveiled the realities and everyday activities that hurt children which must be stopped. The voices of participants were also heard during the open form segment. At the end of the programme, there was a common consensus by all present that there is the need to do more to stop child labour since its effects affect everyone in the Municipality and Ghana.Representatives from the Nungua and

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Teshie Traditional Councils, the Honourable Assembly Members and Heads of decentralized departments and units were also present to support the programme. 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