Child labour has robbed many young boys and girls of a memorable childhood. For years, this practice has gone on in almost every part of the world violating the rights of children. It has, therefore, become necessary more than ever to safeguard children from forced labour.
A report by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations indicates that 71% of child labour is found in the agriculture sector worldwide. The situation is not just limited to developing countries as children in developed nations also suffer the same fate.
Children of school-going age are rather being forced to work on farms, depriving them of formal education. The International Labour Organization (ILO) estimates that 152 million children are in child labour worldwide. It is the responsibility of all to ensure that child rights are being respected irrespective of the geographical area. Countries are expected to take action and also ensure that child protection becomes paramount.
In a time where the world is been hit by the Coronavirus pandemic, much attention should be diverted to vulnerable children in rural and urban areas. Cases of child rape and abuse were recorded in some countries during the coronavirus lockdown. Activists have risen in areas where children who had faced some forms of abuse were denied justice.
Reports indicate that internal child trafficking has been a major challenge in Ghana. Most of these children end up in fishing and farming communities where they are exploited and forced to work for long hours.
Children provide cheap labour to those that they end up with. Government and NGO programmes have been able to rescue some of these children who have been trafficked and reunited them with their families.
Laws against child labour must be strictly enforced to help safeguard children and ensure a brighter future for young boys and girls in Ghana, Africa, and the world at large.
World Day Against Child Labour is observed worldwide on June 12 to raise awareness and activism to prevent child labour. This year’s celebration is under the theme “Covid-19: Protect Children from Child Labour, now more than ever!”