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General News of Thursday, 30 May 2019

Source: Ghananewsagency.org

Children are major stakeholders in attaining SDGs

Israel Akroborto, Volta Regional Director of the Department of Children, has said more work needs to be done on child protection to meet child related targets in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

He noted that almost all the SDGs were child related, but not much was being done on protection of children and called for concerted efforts to promote the welfare of children.

Mr Akroborto said this during a forum in Ho to validate Ghana’s Voluntary National Review (VNR) report on the implementation of the SDGs.

“We need to bring children on board to achieve SDGs… Children are major stakeholders and cannot be left out,” he said.

Mr Akroborto said children were at the receiving end of poverty, and that stakeholders must factor national policies on child protection into efforts at achieving the SDGs.

Mr Nelson Akorli, Ho Municipal Chief Executive, said the work of duty bearers must meet the aspirations of the people, adding that it would contribute towards the attainment of the SDGs.

The forum was convened by the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) with facilitation from the National Commission for Civic Education to solicit comments on the report before it was presented to the President.

Ghana signed up for the VNR this year, with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo expected to present the report at the UN General Assembly on July 17.

Madam Winifred Asare, Principal Programmes Officer at the ARPM, said the absence of policy structures and the lack of coordination of activities affected the country's ability to attain the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

She said the MDGs also were not integrated into development policies, and that government had committed to ensuring that the SDGs did not suffer same fate.

Madam Asare said the Implementation Coordination Committee for the SDGs would ride on existing grassroots infrastructure of the ARPM, and the NCCE to enhance the VNR by accessing the progress of the various Goals.

She said the validation forum would help determine how the country was reigning in the Goals to achieve national progress.

Majority of participants at the forum noted that poverty was on the increase, and called for improvement in the running of the National Health Insurance Scheme and the need for education to target skill development.