Ghana: Presidential candidates must present child policy framework

Accra, June 11, GNA – Children’s Rights International, a non-governmental organization, on Wednesday called on all presidential candidates contesting the 2008 election to present their child development policy to Ghanaians.

In a statement signed by Mr. Bright Kweku Appiah for the organization, it said children constituted 52 per cent (0-18 years) of Ghana’s population and that presenting the frameworks would enable Ghanaians to access them on how their policy would target the children. It said by virtue of Ghana’s commitment towards children at the international, regional and national level it had become necessary for flag bearers of all the political parties to let Ghanaians know their vision for children in order to protect the inherent dignity of children in the country and campaign for fair and good life for children. The statement said the policy frame must cover education, healthcare/nutrition, promotion of children’s rights, maintenance, rehabilitation, respect for child’s dignity, discipline implementation and enforcement of policies in Ghana. It should also include financing of social welfare for effective delivery of their mandate as enshrined in the 1992 constitution. It said the policy must be documented and presented to Ghanaians to enable them to believe in their policy direction for children, pay attention to child development and their welfare, have an assurance for the future, ensure proper participation of children in national issues, and define and measure progress being made in children in the country. The statement said though Ghana was a leader in children’s welfare and protection, children in the country were facing serious problems such as child mortality, school dropout, child labour, child trafficking, rape, defilement, and non-maintenance of children. It said over 800,000 children were not in school while 50 per cent of them who sat for BECE in public schools never got admission to Senior High Schools. It added that, there was an increasing gap between the urban child and rural child in terms of access and quality of education.

According to the statement, there were over 240,000 children who had been rendered orphans and vulnerable as a result of HIV/AIDS, and 21,000 of them were currently living with the condition. “Stigmatization and non-acceptance of these children within the family structure makes them more vulnerable and prone to harm.” The statement said the process of administering the law in the country had made maintenance and rehabilitation process slow, adding that, there had been a number of child related cases in the courts for three or more years for which judgement had not been delivered. It said children who were victims of defilement and rape did not receive care and support from the court by way of the law outlining the care and support processes. The care for survivors of these circumstances did not get the needed support and care required for their maintenance and rehabilitation.

Source: GNA

Published in: on July 23, 2008 at 1:38 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Impact Of Rural-Urban Divide On Quality Education

Presented here is a link to the research report by the  Ghana National Education Coalition Campaign. It reveals the disparity in education facilities in rural and urban areas.

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Published in: on July 23, 2008 at 1:33 pm  Leave a Comment  



INTRODUCTION: The majority of Ghanaians experience low standards of living evidenced by poor quality of life and lack of access to basic social facilities including education, healthcare, safe water and sanitation (GLSS 1991/92), Nabila and Fayorsey,1996). In the urban areas, children from low income households contribute to family income through a wide range of commercial activities such as Hawking, head porterage, “shoe-shining”, petty trading etc.

THE SITUATION OF THE GHANAIAN CHILD: Children are a potential human resource and therefore if any nation is to have continuity and progress, there is the need to preserve the future generation – children. Yet, most Ghanaian children are denied basic rights like food, shelter , education, health leisure and at times life. Despite the fact that Ghana is a signatory to the UN Convention and the O.A.U, charter on the rights of the child, children are subjected to several forms of abuse. The Ghanaian media abounds with cases and instances of child abuse ranging from abandonment, rape, assault to ritual murder.

Many children in Ghana do not have access to adequate food and nutrition although they may be residing with their parents or guardians. The situation is worse for children who are not under such care especially street children (Apt and Grieco, 1997; Korboe,1997). According to Ministry of Health and UNICEF estimates (Ministry of Health,1996),only 32% of the population have access to sanitary means of excreta disposal and 30.6% of rural households in Ghana do not have sanitary facilities at all, relying principally on seashores, bushes and farms as free range for defecation (GNCC,1997). This has serious implication for health and the safety of children in particular. Even where some facilities exist, children are not allowed to use them, especially, if its use involves some money out lay and are therefore exposed to snake bites in the bush and other hazards. Children play in filthy gutters and are often seen scavenging on waste disposal sites. These unhealthy habits are sources of diseases and ill health. In Ghana, children are the main agents for waste disposal from the household- a task performed by children as young as four years, thus exposing them to various disease pathogens (Grieco et al:1996)

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Published in: on July 8, 2008 at 10:58 am  Leave a Comment