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14.09.2005 Regional News

Stop child labour and slavery - Ben Mensah

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Agona Ofoase, C/R, Sept 14, GNA - Mr Ben Mensah, District Chief Executive for Agona, has advised parents to stop the practice of sending their children especially females to well to do people in urban areas to undertake domestic labour.

He especially criticised the use of children given out by their parents for money to undertake economic activities as selling and fishing at the expense of their education describing the practise as "slavery".

The DCE was speaking when he and Mr Dowuona Hammond, District Director of Education ushered in 300 primary one pupils enrolled in five schools they visited in the district.

The Director said the programme introduced by the government, was going to be an annual affair to encourage parents and guardians to enrol their children of school going age at the beginning of every academic year.

Schools visited by Mr Mensah and Mr Hammond, were at Agona Ofoase, Agona Nsaba, Duakwa, Agona Duotu, Amanfuom-Mensakrom and Agona Swedru. The DCE stressed the need for parents to take advantage of the government's capitation grant to send their children to school. He called advised parents who had sent their children to urban centres to engage in domestic child labour to withdraw them and enrol them since the collection of levies had been banned in all basic schools.

Mr Mensah said the government had introduced sound policies and programmes to enable all children to enjoy quality education from the basic to the tertiary level.

Mr Hammond told the chiefs and the people of Ofoase that the government had taken over the new school built by the people through communal labour with assistance from the District Assembly and was going to post teachers to ensure effective teaching and learning. He asked pupils already enrolled to encourage the new ones to enjoy their stay to ensure that they remained in school to avoid truancy. The Director asked the teachers to show commitment and love to their pupils since their future depended on them.

Nana Kobina Donkoh, Omankrado of Ofoase, commended the government for absorbing the school into the public system and assured the DCE and the Director that parents would be sensitised to provide the needs of their children to improve their performance and to remain in school. The new pupils were given biscuits, soft drinks and entertained by the school band.

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