Anambra State Government warned parents and guardians over the weekend that they ran the possibility of being arrested and prosecuted if their offspring were seen hawking and beggin on the streets.
Speaking at the celebration of the International Day of Families this year, the state commissioner for women and social welfare, Mrs. Ify Obinabo, said that the action would secure the survival, healthy growth, and protection of every child in the state.
She claimed that the proposal will discourage guardians and parents as well.
“The rate of child hawking and beggining on our streets, as well as the rate of child sexual abuse, trafficking, and maltreatment in the state, are alarming,” she stated.
“The use of children for domestic labour, negligence and maltreatment on the part of parents and guardians contradict the tenets of the Child Rights law.
“The ministry is ready to arrest and prosecute anyone – parents or guardians – who abuse the fundamental rights of children in the state.
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“From next week, if we see any child hawking or begging on the street, that child will identify whoever engaged him or her and we will arrest the person.”
The Commissioner said her ministry would continue to sensitise parents on the need to send their children to school and prioritise their upbringing, describing education and proper upbringing of children as the only way to eradicate poverty and crime in the society.
“These children need care, love, support and sense of belonging, not abuse or domestic labour”, she added.
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