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Street kids set for Parliament

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Homeless children living on the streets, commonly referred to as “street kids’’, will this year get a chance to participate in debate during the sitting of the 19th session of the Junior Parliament of Zimbabwe, which will be officially opened next Thursday.

According to the organisers, the Zimbabwe Youth Council (ZYC), the official opening would coincide with commemorations of the Day of the African Child.

“This year’s theme for the Day of the African Child as set by the African Union is All Together for Urgent Actions in Favour of Street Children,” said Tanzvikwa Guranongo, the ZYC information and publicity officer.

“The 2011 Junior Parliament debates, programmes and activities will be centred on this theme and active involvement of children living on the streets will be sought,” Guranongo said.

He said elections for the Presidium of the Junior Parliament would be held on June 13 before the official opening on June 16.

There will be a total of 210 constituencies from all provinces of Zimbabwe and children will contest in elections for 60 Senatorial seats, 10 seats for Governors, 20 seats for Chiefs and 20 posts for Parliament office bearers.

“There will also be elections for 41 junior ministers, 29 deputy ministers and one Attorney
General on June 13,” said Guranongo.

He said the junior MPs would also get a chance to attend an orientation workshop before being sworn in at Parliament Building on June 14.

“The Day of the African Child has been celebrated on June 16 every year since 1991, when it was first initiated by the Organisation of African Unity (now African Union). It honours those who participated in the Soweto Uprising of 1976 on that day,” said Guranongo.

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