PARENTAL care is one of the responsib ilities that adults are supposed to shoulder, as nature we may even dare declare an un-deb atab le – ob ligation. This is dictated b y sheer logic.
For upon b eing thrust onto the world, a b ab y who sub seq uently b ecomes a young b oy or girl knows precious little ab out the world around him or her, beyond instincts such as hunger or thirst, for which he or she cries to draw the mother’s attention to.
Parents a mother and father – are supposed to play a crucial role in ensuring that the precious little creature grows up in a happy and secure place.
But it is unfortunate that many stories are b eing told of little children falling victims to accidents such as b eing b adly b urnt b y hot water, while playing in kitchens where they are not supposed to wander around without an adult’s company.
Q uite sub stantial are stories, too, of children drowning in unsecured ponds, and b eing b itten b y insects while crawling in b ushes. K een parental care and attention are thus critical in ensuring that babies are safe, and the role is upgraded to a higher level, when they grow older and are in a position to grasp instructions from adults.
This is a social role that translates into an examination in which not all parents and guardians score good marks, some of whom are actually ab ysmal performers.
It is a prob lem that is actually approximating crisis dimensions, an issue around which revolves recent sentiments of Sheikh Harith K ituka, an Islamic cleric in K ib akwe Ward in Dodoma Region’s Mpwapwa District.
They were voiced in an interview on the sidelines of a training session for men focused on parenting. He justifiab ly criticised the tendency of some men perceiving that the parental role should b e shouldered b y women, as well as grandmothers b eing assigned the task.
The grandmother dimension is particularly tricky, b ecause due to strong sentimental attachment, many pamper grandchildren as human eggs, as it were.
As Sheikh K ituka sorrowfully noted, moral decadence was fairly widespread, the prob lem b eing compounded by some men abandoning their families.
We share the cleric’s concern as evidence ab ounds all around us, one of the manifestations b eing predominantly urban centre-b ased children upon whom the ugly lab el ‘chokoraa’ has b een pasted.
This is a hugely emb arrassing crisis that should have b een addressed the day b efore yesterday rather than the day after tomorrow.