Universal Children’s Day 2022: 153 Million Children Between Ages 5,14 Forced Into Child Labour

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 A Child romances a beautiful lady around Lagos-Abeokuta expressway in forage during school hour in Oshodi Lagos, Nigeria. Photo: Abiodun Omotosho

By Abiodun Omotosho, Nigeria

 

Though Universal Children’s Day was established by the United Nations in 1954, it wasn’t until November 20, 1959 that the UN General Assembly adopted an extended form of the Declaration of the Rights of the Child. Originally acquired in 1924 by the League of Nations, the UN adopted this document as its own statement of children’s rights. Currently, there are about 153 million children between the ages of 5 and 14 who are forced into child labour.

No one is bid to experience poverty. There is a right to basic needs of a child in Nigeria. Poverty is synonymous to insufficiency and inadequacy. A community or society that is rich in human resources and natural resources like Nigeria still experiences an unfriendly phenomenon of insufficiency and inadequacy where an average income of a citizen is less than one dollar per day (Ten cent).

A Child forages along the expressway of Lagos-Abeokuta during school hours in Oshodi Lagos, Nigeria. Photo: Abiodun Omotosho

A working-class youths could not eat a balanced diet, not to mention the unemployed. Children, widows and orphans are the most vulnerable. They cannot afford a day meal not to talk of three-square meals; eating is a tug of war and frustration looms. A situation when citizens are devoid of essential providence is unacceptable.

In the original text of the ‘’Declaration of the Rights of the Child’’.

The child must be given the means requisite for normal development, both materially and spiritually.

A Child romances a beautiful lady around Lagos-Abeokuta expressway in forage during school hour in Oshodi Lagos, Nigeria. Photo: Abiodun Omotosho

The child that is hungry must be fed, the child that is sick must be nursed, the child that is backward must be helped, the delinquent child must be reclaimed, and the orphan and the waif must be sheltered and succoured.

The child must be the first to receive relief in times of distress.

The child must be put in a position to earn a livelihood and must be protected against every form of exploitation.

The child must be brought up in the consciousness that its talents must be devoted to the service of its fellow men.

A Child romances a beautiful lady around Lagos-Abeokuta expressway in forage during school hour in Oshodi Lagos, Nigeria. Photo: Abiodun Omotosho

For the expanded version, the UN adopted 10 additional principles with an accompanying resolution, proposed by the delegation of Afghanistan, calling for governments to recognize these rights, strive for their acceptance, and publicize the document as widely as possible.

On November 20, 1989, The UN General Assembly adopted the Convention of the Rights of the Child. The CRC is a human rights treaty setting out the civil, political, economic, social, health, and cultural rights of children. The document deals with child-specific needs and rights, requiring all nations that ratify it are bound to it by international law and must act within the best interests of the child.

A Child forages along the expressway of Lagos-Abeokuta during school hours in Oshodi Lagos, Nigeria. Photo: Abiodun Omotosho

In September 2012, the Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon of the United Nations led the initiative for the education of children. He firstly wanted every child to be able to attend school, a goal by 2015. Secondly, to improve the skill set acquired in these schools. Finally, implementing policies regarding education to promote peace, respect, and environmental concern.

Universal Children’s Day is not just a day to celebrate children for who they are, but to bring awareness to children around the globe that have experienced violence in forms of abuse, exploitation, and discrimination. Children are used as labourers in some countries, immersed in armed conflict, living on the streets, suffering by differences be it religion, minority issues, or disabilities.

Industrial development will help raise the productive capacity of the people and create ever-increasing employment opportunities.

It enhances intra-African trade. Africa Industrialization Day aims to increase intra-African trade through better harmonization and increased industry- and business-level competitiveness. A focus on more intra-African trade in industrial goods promotes African industrialization and the advancement of its manufacturing sector, providing more employment opportunities for the continent’s booming youth population. Lo

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