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Regional News of Friday, 30 July 2004

Source: GNA

Child labour on the increase in Atwima

Toase (Ash), July 30, GNA - Madam Comfort Irene Badu, the Atwima District Early Childhood Development Co-ordinator has expressed concern about the alarming rate at which child labour was increasing in the district.

She said the phenomenon was prevalent in the informal sector and children were engaged to do hazardous work on farms and mines and at quarries, restaurants, hotels and other entertainment spots, where they were exposed to immoral acts.

Madam Badu was speaking on the topic: "Child Labour" at a lecture organised by the Atwima District Education Directorate at Toase in the Atwima District on Thursday as part of activities marking the District's annual "Early Childhood" week celebration under the theme" "Children, Our Future Leaders".

Activities undertaken during the week included clean-up exercises, excursions, fun games, drama, cultural displays, and poetry recital and quiz competition.

Madam Badu called on child-related organisations to educate the public on Conventions on the elimination of child labour, agreements and laws on the rights of children to protect them from economic exploitation.

Mr Robert Kofi Naissah, the Atwima District GNAT/BUPL Early Childhood Development Project Co-ordinator, who spoke on the topic: The Rights Of The Child", said children should be assisted to exploit their potentials.

He appealed to parents to provide their children with balanced diet, shelter, security, love, health care and quality education to ensure their development.

Mr Naissah said the problem of child labour was complex and called on Ghanaians to support programmes aimed at eliminating the phenomenon. Nana Amoako Agyemang, Chairman of Toase School Management Committee (SMC) asked parents to respect the rights of their children.

Earlier, the children of the kindergarten at Toase, led by Mr Anthony Baffour Toku, a teacher in the town, visited the Palace of Nana Asiamah Poku Afrifa II, Chief of Toasehene to acquaint themselves with stool regalia and other cultural artefacts.

The Chief conducted them round and briefed them on the history of the town and the importance of the artefacts to his people. 3