By Joyce Remi- Babayeju
Abuja (SundiataPost) – A Civil Society Organization, Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Center, (CISLAC) has added its voice to call on the Federal Government to enforce the legislative intervention to compliment the Child Rights Act to address the neglect of Almajiri and street children in the country.
Executive Director of CISLAC, Auwal Ibrahim Musa (Rafsanjani) who made the call today said that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in the country has further exposed the plight of Almajiri and other children on the streets.
He said, ‘’Even though the Child Rights Act is in place, there has been continuous negligence of the Almajiri and street children. We therefore call on the National Assembly to intensify efforts to provide education and protection of these vulnerable children and ensure that no child is left behind in the benefits that accrue to the Nigerian child as stipulated in the Child Rights Act. ‘’
Recall that the United Nations had reported that more than 13 million children of school age are out of school while the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF survey reveals that the number of out- of-school children has risen from 10.5 million to 13 million, making Nigeria he highest country with out of school children.
Since NCDC commenced COVID-19 intensive testing on roaming the streets, especially Amajiri children in different parts of the country 169 in Kaduna tested 65 were positive. In Gombe state out of 48 tested, 8 were positive, in Bauchi 7 out of 38 tested positive and in Jigawa State out of the 168 Almajiri tested 91 were positive.
The group further urged government to ensure a holistic Monitoring and Evaluation system to implement laws to promote accountability in the allocation and utilization of COVID-19 public funds.
CISLAC further laments the level of insecurity in the form of armed robbery, kidnapping, killings, and called for an urgent need for the re-organization of Nigeria’s security apparatus and advocated for reforms in the security sector to ensure the protection of lives and properties of Nigerian citizens.