Children’s Day: NHRC Expresses Concern Over Increasing Cases of Violation of the Rights of the Child

The Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission NHRC, Dr. Tony Ojukwu has expressed concern over the alarming and continuous rise in cases of violations of the rights of children across the country.

In a statement to commemorate the 2024 Children’s Day, Ojukwu said the disturbing trend which is captured in the Commission’s monthly dashboard (on report of human right violations across the country) underscore an urgent need for a renewed commitment from all facets of the society to protect and guarantee the fundamental rights of our children.

The Executive Secretary said Children represent the most vulnerable population and the consistent increase in reported violations of their right is a stark reminder of the challenges they face daily. “These violations not only threaten their immediate well-being but also compromise their future potentials and the overall health and security of our society. It is therefore imperative that we act decisively and with urgency to address this menace”.

He said though the Child Right Act has been passed by several states in Nigeria, there is a need for the various state governments to strengthen its implementation in order to protect children from all forms of abuse, exploitation, and neglect.

Ojukwu, also used the opportunity of the Children’s Day to call on the government to develop a comprehensive support system for children in distress, create accessible and well-resourced child protection services, helplines, and shelters,  that will alleviate the suffering of the victims, he said.

He noted that it is imperative to train professionals in children centered education, social welfare, healthcare, and law enforcement to enable them identify and respond to child right violations and other social problems effectively.

He emphasised that education is key to raise awareness about children's rights among parents, caregivers, educators, and children themselves, this will empower children to understand and assert their rights.

He also harped on the need to establish a robust mechanism for monitoring, reporting, and addressing violations of children's rights. “This will ensure that there is accountability at all levels, and that perpetrators of violations are brought to justice”.

 According to him, the protection of children's rights is not merely a legal obligation but a moral imperative which will secure the future of the country. “As we celebrate Children's Day 2024, let us reaffirm our commitment to creating a safe, supportive, and nurturing environment for every child”

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