Mr Rasheed Obasa, Leader of the House, Oshodi-Isolo Local Government area of Lagos State, has called for urgent adoption of the state Child Protection Law to create conducive environment for child rights.
Obasa made the call on Friday in Lagos at a public hearing organised by the Oshodi-Isolo Local Government on some bills that had passed the second reading before the state assembly.
The Lagos State Government had on Dec. 16, 2016 commenced implementation of the Executive Order ratified by former Gov Akinwunmi Ambode which established the Lagos State Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy.
The Executive Order highlights the importance and priority which the state government placed toward protecting the lives of children,.
It applies to all state government organisations, schools, child-centred institutions, orphanages and child-related institutions located in the state, both public and private.
The Nigeria News Agency reports that the proposed bills include: “Environmental Sanitation and Management, Child Rights Protection, Prohibit Trading Around Primary Schools, Revenue Items and Off Loading of Haulage”.
Obasa said that abuse of children was on the increase, which he said had become a great threat to children’s future.
“The local government may become incapacitated, if there is no enough fund to implement its lofty programmes.
“The bills to improve the internally generated revenue is also under consideration.
“If people pay their rates regularly, the local government shall continue to provide basic infrastructure for the benefit of all,” Obasa said.
He also said a clean and healthy environment would not only enhance economic growth, but also rid the environment of miscreants whose activities pose threats to people’s lives.
In his remarks, Mr Idris Muse-Ariyoh, Executive Chairman, Oshodi-Isolo Local Government, said that all the bills were put together in the interest of people living within Oshodi environment.
Muse-Ariyoh said that the local government would be in a better position, if they could play their parts by making people comfortable and friendly in their environment.
“We all know that in a country or society where there is no rules or laws, there is no offence, part of the reasons that prompted us to act fast.
“Everybody deserves good and clean environment, while children’s right should be protected from miscreants and any form of harassment,” he said.
Also, Mrs Peju Osoba, Head of Country Office, Terre des Hommes Foundation, an NGO, said children should have access to development opportunities wherever they might find themselves.
Osoba said governments should know that children must be protected, irrespective of their migratory status in the country.
“Children should have access to education to reduce the number of children that get on the moves.
“Education is a right for all children whether they are migrants or not, they should have access to the basics of life.
“We collaborate with Oshodi-Isolo Local Government by supporting the drafting of their bills on Child Right Protection,” she said.
Osoba said that the foundation’s project was aimed at improving the protection of migrant children along the Abidjan-Lagos corridor and to reduce their vulnerability.
This, she added, would improve their access to development opportunities.
“It quite interesting that government at the grassroots is discussing on how to protect children, because it was not an easy thing.
“Yaba Local Government has also proposed a bill on child protection few months ago, while Alimosho Local Government is also having interest.
“Oshodi-Isolo Local Government is in a strategic and critical area, because it is a destination point for migrants children,” she said.(NAN)
Edited by Olawunmi Ashafa/Olagoke Olatoye
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