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13.08.2004 Regional News

Assemblies advised to involve children in welfare plans

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Kumasi, Aug 13, GNA - A suggestion has been made to district assemblies to involve and also give due consideration to the opinion of children when drawing up plans for the welfare and development of children at the district level.

Mr Peter Eduful, Ashanti Regional Co-ordinator of the Ghana National Commission on Children (GNCC) who made the suggestion, said it was only by seeking and incorporating children's opinions into children's welfare plans that district assemblies could come out with more strategic plans capable of effectively addressing concerns of children.

Mr Eduful was addressing a day's workshop organised by the GNCC in Kumasi on Friday under the Ministry of Women and Children's Affairs 2004 service activities and programme with district assemblies and social groupings as well as religious organisations on the Children's Act 560, 1998 and the United Nations (UN) convention on the rights of children.

The workshop was designed to sensitise district assemblies on the Children's Act and the UN convention on the rights of children and the need to devise more workable means of ensuring that children were protected and their development guaranteed in their districts. Sixty-five participants attended from all the 18 districts in the region as well as representatives from various social groupings and religious organisations.

Mr Eduful said district assemblies should demonstrate a more genuine concern for the proper upbringing of children by also enacting byelaws in their areas to protect children in the localities. Such byelaws, he said, should not only be passed but should also be effectively implemented.

He also proposed to district assemblies to re-activate committees that deal with children's issues at the various levels and support them with the requisite logistics to perform creditably.

Mr Augustus Anane-Quebah, a Principal Investigator at the Kumasi office of the Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), warned against treating a child differently because of his or her sex, physical, social, ethnic or economic situation. He said such an act was unlawful and should be avoided at all cost.

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