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08.08.2003 Regional News

Bawku forms vigilate group to check child trafficking

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Bawku Aug 8, GNA - An anti-child trafficking vigilante group for eight communities in the Bawku East District has been inaugurated. It was preceded by a two-day training workshop for the 64 participants. The workshop was organised by the Coalition on the Rights of the Child (GNCRC) in conjunction with the Bawku East Women Development Association (BEWDA).

The participants appealed to the government to pass laws to prevent child abuse and trafficking of children.

Participants said the government should go beyond the mere ratification of the child rights convention and enact laws to ensure that children are protected against abuses.

The vigilante group, the first in the country is aimed at keeping surveillance teams in the eight communities along the country's borders in the district to reduce child slavery and exploitation.

Mrs Susan Sabaa, National Co-ordinator for GNCRC, said policies on the protection of the child are inadequate.

''Until the government comes out with the right laws that seek to address the child's welfare its signatory to the child's rights convention would only mean a mere talk'', she said.

The District Chief Executive, Mr. Abdul-Rahman Gumah, in a speech read on his behalf said child trafficking and child labour have been a concern to government.

''The only means to find a lasting solution to it can be achieved through the involvement of the people. ''

He appealed to the vigilante groups to collaborate with traditional authorities and the security agencies to ensure that the crime is stopped.

He commended BEWDA and GNCRC for selecting the district to pilot the programme, adding that the assembly will support their efforts to find a lasting solution to child trafficking.

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