By Patrick Ochei
The Implementor, Delta State Child Rights Implementation Committee, Bridget Anyafulu Esq has charged the Delta State Chapter of Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, to live up to its spiritual obligation by helping the society reduce moral decadence and other vices among juveniles that may jeopardize their future endeavours.
She made this appeal during a visit of the Child Rights Implementation Committee to the Secretariat of CAN in Asaba, to intimate them of the existence of the Committee and equally seek their partnership towards implementing the rights of children in Delta State.
Anyafulu while enlightening them of the functions of the Committee, dealt with a number of cases raised by CAN members.
According to Anyafulu, “We as a Committee are fully empowered to protect children and prosecute offenders of child abuses. We are fighting against the sale of children. So I implore you to report any cases of child sale to us and leave us to handle the matter.
“Another very serious issue now in the State is Child Adoption. Whatever you need to do in terms of adoption, go to Ministry of Women Affairs and in case someone is trying to play pranks along the line, just report to the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry and it will be promptly resolved”, she responded.
The EA to the Governor equally addressed the issues raised with regards to head teachers asking pupils to pay for noise making, hand work, procurement of chalks, including a complaint that the caterers for the school feeding programme are shortchanging the children by sharing for them one egg for four pupils.
Anyafulu implored the CAN members to report any teacher or head teacher involved in collecting unapproved fees and levies in schools to the Commissioner for Basic Education, assuring them the offenders would be adequately punished as Government does not tolerate such corrupt tendencies.
On the issue of Female Genital Mutilation, Madam Anyafulu said the Committee had worked out modalities on how to use the traditional rulers to achieve its objectives. She stated that through the help of a member and traditional ruler – HRM Obi Kikachukwu, the Committee would be visiting communities to advocate against the harmful traditional practice.
Moreover, the hardworking Executive Assistant to the Governor on Special Duties, assured CAN that Senator Okowa has laudable programmes that would make our children better people in future.
Her words, “This Government has made promises and it is acting on those promises. We just need the cooperation and support of every stakeholder to actualise these laudable policies and programmes as part of the Stronger Delta Agenda.”
In his short and explicit response, the CAN Chairman, Delta State Chapter, Apostle Silvester Okorote commended the Committee for starting its functions on a good note, adding that advocacy is the best way to go.
He equally commended the State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa for inaugurating the Implementation Committee after several years of domesticating the Child Rights Law in the State.
He however, assured that on their part as Church and Spiritual leaders, they would do everything to bring back the good old days when moral lessons were taught and imbibed.