Girl-child Rights Awareness Initiative in Africa, an NGO, has advocated for the implementation of Child Rights Act of 2003.
The Executive Director of the organisation, Mrs Oluwatope Awe, made the call on Friday in Osogbo while fielding questions from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on this year’s Children Day.
Awe said that there was need to protect Nigerian children from abuse through the Act, regretting that the law was yet to be tested since its passage in 2003.
She said recent events in the country has shown that Nigerian children are very vulnerable to abuse and humiliation.
The rights activist explained that the level of terror some parents unleashed on their wards could not be imagined, likewise those who engaged children as domestic servants.
According to her, there are imprints of slavery in the management of domestic servants in Nigeria, where people treat their domestic servants like animals.
She said the implementation of the act would help in no small way to reduce the menace and give dignity to children for the purpose of building better future for them and equip them for the future.
“It is very unfortunate and a big embarrassment for our nation that since the Child Rights Act was enacted over a decade ago, no single person has been tried by the Act despite several abuses against children on daily basis.
“It is now appeared that our judiciary is not bothered about the wellbeing of the children in the face of their vulnerability, it is so pathetic.
“Judiciary supposed to be a harbinger of justice and protection, especially for those who are weak and vulnerable like children.
“It is our hope that the judiciary will rise up to its responsibility and stand for vulnerable children who are innocently suffering in silence,” Awe said.
Besides, the rights activist called on state governments to outlaw street hawking by children, saying early education should be given priority. (NAN)