JNI, CAN advocates massive awareness campaign against child abuse
Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI) and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), on Thursday advocated for massive public campaign to enlighten Nigerians on the need to protect children from all forms of abuse.
They made the call in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Zaria.
Malam Ibrahim Kufena, Secretary, Kaduna State Chapter of JNI, told NAN that the gross violation of children’s rights was largely due to ignorance of religious provisions on what constitutes child right.
According to him, there should be massive enlightenment campaign against child abuse, by educating the public on what constitutes child right and why it should be protected.
“Among the Muslim Ummah for example, Islam directed prospective fathers to source for a good mother for their children and equally directed would-be mothers to search for a good man to father their children.
“So you see, even before a child is born, Islam has made provisions for his well-being by defining his or her rights to ensure uninterrupted development of the child to adulthood.
“But in spite of that, people still violates such provisions by subjecting their children to all kinds of hardships and exposing them to all forms of abuse.
“There must be consistent campaign in the media, in Mosques and Churches, to expose the ills of child abuse in our communities and make known the gains of respecting and protecting the rights of the child“.
Kufena also attributed the rising cases of child abuse such as rape, battering and forced labour in the state, to absence of legal framework to check excesses of parents and guardians.
He commended United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) for consistently pushing for the adoption of the child right law in the state.
According to him, the law if adopted, will reduce deliberate abuse of children by parents, guardians and those in authority.
In the same vein, the Kaduna State CAN’s Executive Secretary, Rev. Sunday Ibrahim, said people’s predisposition to child abuse was due to lack of awareness on the gravity of their action on the child.
Ibrahim solicited for a state-wide enlightenment campaign, targeting households, communities, and local government councils on the need to protect children from abuse.
“The Bible is clear about the rights of the child.
“It is clearly written in the Bible that parent should train the child in the fear of the Lord so that by the time he grows, he will not depart from such teachings.
“We remind Christians about this provision, about this command in the Bible, so that they will diligently discharge their responsibilities to their children as directed by God , “he said.
He also commended UNICEF for its efforts toward ensuring the adoption of child protection law in the state.
“The review of the 2009 Kaduna State Draft Child Right Law, organised by UNICEF will equip stakeholders with the necessary knowledge on how to effectively protect the right of children under their care from any form of abuse.
“As stakeholders on child protection, the meeting provides us with the needed legal framework to properly address child abuse issues.
“It also enlightened us on key child protection principles and ways to discharge our responsibilities more effectively.
“I am confident that the efforts would strengthen our common goals towards providing full and effective protection to all children in our localities.
“At the end, we would get to know our respective duties better and understand how such duties complement and supplement that of others concerned with child protection, “the clergy said.