Our ref: BC 126/116/01
June 11, 2012
WORLD DAY AGAINST CHILD LABOUR – JUNE 12, 2012
The Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) joins the local and international community in calling for an end to the practice of exposing children to hazardous and other exploitative forms of work, as the world marks the International Day Against Child Labour, today, June12, 2012.
The celebration, which was launched in 2002 by the International Labour Organization (ILO), provides an opportunity for governments and other stakeholders to give further support to the campaign against child labour.
The theme for 2012, “Human Rights and Social Justice… Let’s End Child Labour”, is a very important call as it highlights the urgent need to eliminate the worst forms of child labour to enable children of the world to develop and realize their full potential in society.
Child labour does not only constitute a violation of the rights of the victims, it also puts their future into jeopardy and undermines national development. It deprives children of their right to free education and impedes their ability to acquire the forms of training for a decent living in future.
Ghana has been commended as being among the nations leading the way in the elimination of child labour in the world. However, our efforts are still a far cry from attaining the global target of total elimination of the worst forms of child labour by 2016. We still have children in the fishing, mining and cocoa growing communities involved in the practice.
The nation’s efforts in this regard have been hampered by a lack of coordination among key stakeholders, even though a solid legal framework is in place and a National Plan of Action (NPA) has been adopted to deal with the worst forms of child labour.
The Commission urges all stakeholders to redouble their efforts to quicken the pace of implementation of the NPA. It is also important that we take steps to monitor and review the effectiveness of the NPA in dealing with the worst forms of child labour to ensure rapid progress in protecting the rights of children.
The Commission further urges the government to step up its social intervention programmes, such as the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP), in all areas where poverty is found to be endemic to alleviate the plight of households that are unable to offer full protection to their children.
The Commission calls on parents, in particular, to be more interested in the welfare and education of their children to complement the efforts of government and other stakeholders to end child labour and offer better protection for the rights of children in Ghana.
LAURETTA VIVIAN LAMPTEY