Accra, July 09, GNA – A two-day regional stakeholder workshop to promote collaboration, coordination and networking for national level law enforcement agencies on child labour has opened in Accra.
The workshop was to build the capacity of stakeholders especially law enforcement agencies to better appreciate the importance of the law on child protection for effective implementation.
Mr Eric Okrah, a Child Protection Specialist, advocated the strengthening of government institutions responsible for the implementation of policies and laws on children's rights in the country.
He said Ghana had good policies and laws on children's rights and was the first to ratify the International Labour Organisation's Conventions 138 and 182 but the difficulty lies in the implementation process to protect these children.
“There is a disconnection between the law and its enforcement or implementation,” he said adding that Government needed to build the capacity of these institutions in terms of human capital development, infrastructure and the provision of logistics to help implement laws for the protection of children, since they were the future builders of the country.
He called for attitudinal change of the public towards the concept of child labour in the country.
The specialist advocated budgetary allocations for institutions responsible for child rights issues in the country.
Mr Stephen McClelland, Chief Technical Advisor, ILO Ghana, said statistics indicated that one out of every five children in the country was a child labourer.
He said child labour in some parts of the world was reducing while in West Africa it was rather increasing.
Participants would be taken through ILO Conventions 138 and 182, ILO Decent work country programme and child labour and national laws on child labour.