Campaign launched to fight violence against children

THE ActionAid Tanzania has launched a campaign to protect Tanzanian children against violence, as the government insists that electronic-violence is currently on the rise.

The campaign which was launched in Chamwino District, Dodoma Region also coincided with the official launching of the district’s child protection council.

The two activities were conducted as the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) in collaboration with several stakeholders fighting for the rights of children kicked of a week-long activity aimed at averting violence against children, ahead of the much-awaited celebrations to mark the International Day of the African Child scheduled for Friday this week.

The official launching was graced by the Deputy Director for Justice and Children Development in the Ministry of Community Development, Gender, Women and Special Groups, Mr Mathias Haule on behalf of the minister, Dr Doroth Gwajima.

International Day of the African Child is observed on every June 16.

On that day, in 1971, over 200,000 South African students protested against the poor quality of their education and demanded to be taught in their native language.

The march resulted in the killing of hundreds of protesters by armed police officers. The day became a public holiday in South Africa and is now globally known as a day to draw attention to the obstacles African children face in accessing quality education.

At the weekend, ActionAid Tanzania convened government officials, NGOs, media and various stakeholders engaging in the protection of the rights of children in the country, to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the full realisation of the rights of children in the country.

The theme chosen for this year is: ‘Consider the Safety of the Child in the Digital World’.

The theme was specifically chosen due to the fact that violence meted against children through online channels were escalating in the world and Tanzania in particular.

At the event, in the speech read on her behalf by the Deputy Director for Justice and Child Development,  Dr Gwajima said that children were currently forced to engage into sexual  orientations through different social media platforms either by persons they know or those they don’t.

The minister asked parents/guardians to control their children especially when using smartphones, as she equally requested all stakeholders to understand that their obligations were to join forces in the fight against children violence.

According to the coordinator of the ActionAid Tanzania, Joram Wimmo, ahead of the Ok International Day of the African Child, his organisation had decided to convene stakeholders so that they can join hands in the campaign to fight against violence meted on children.

“We need to know that children have important needs that bring about their rights and our target is to ensure that our children are well protected and living at safe places,” he noted.

ActionAid Tanzania is an affiliate of ActionAid International Federation which is a global justice organisation working to achieve social justice, gender equality and eradication of poverty.

According to the Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance (CHRGG) Gender Coordinator, Florence Chaki, who also attended the event at the weekend, there was a milliard of challenges in the fight against protection of children rights, among them lack of evidence and that some parents were killing cases by engaging into arbitration between two parties engaged.

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