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Children In Nigeria

The four basic pillars of the Nigerian 2003 Child Right Act are:
The right to survival; to development; to participation; and to protection

These rights are still not given the required, urgent attention needed. Investigations reveal that in the country there are about 15 million children below the age of 14 who are engaged as:

  • Hawkers
  • Shoe shiner
  • Bus conductor
  • Apprentice
  • Domestic servants
  • Beggars
  • Scavengers
  • Street urchins & miscreants among others.

CAUSES for the above include:

  • Hardship resulting from extreme poverty
  • Urbanisation
  • Inadequate/unreliable statistics
  • Breakdown in extended family values & affiliation
  • High school dropouts
  • Non-existing/inadequate infrastructure
  • Communal wars
  • Non-sustenance of awareness & intervention programmes
  • Misplaced priorities at various levels of government
  • Broken homes & divorce
  • Polygamy

The EFFECTS include but are not limited to:

  • Exposure to sexual abuse
  • Crime involvement
  • Discrimination & stigmatisation
  • Increased number of maladjusted children
  • Homelessness/destitution
  • Depression
  • Exploitation

Suggested SOLUTIONS to which the Ebunoluwa Foundation is striving include:

  1. Appraisal of the ACT involving all major stakeholders
  2. Involvement of parents/guardian in awareness creation & sustenance
  3. More visible involvement of children at all levels
  4. Harmonisation of cultural similarities/ differences
  5. Standardised quality education structure
  6. Rapid upgrading & development of infrastructure especially education sector at all levels
  7. Subsidised education to accommodate all children (formal & informal)
  8. Development of reliable statistics
  9. Increased access to free & or affordable health care
  10. To ensure that policies are not just made, but are made to work.
The list of things needed to be done is inexhaustible

The Child Right ACT was made for us; we are not made for the ACT; let us work at it and make it work!