HomeHeadlinesSpike in child labour cases riles ZHRC

Spike in child labour cases riles ZHRC

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BY SHARON BUWERIMWE
THE Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) has raised concern over the rising number of children being forced into illegal vending to supplement family incomes.

This was revealed yesterday during commemorations to mark World Day Against Child Labour running under the theme: Universal Social Protection to End Child Labour.

As the country’s economic situation worsens, children are engaging in illegal and risky vending activities in urban centres to supplement their family incomes.

ZHRC executive secretary Dellis Mazambane said: “Child labour is a violation of children’s rights. The Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the African Charter on the Rights of the Child are very clear that children should not be subjected to any child labour. Children should be at school and they should have opportunities to grow up and not be subjected to child labour, abuse and exploitation.

“We see children who are begging in the streets, some are selling in the streets. These children are missing out on education opportunities and we need to know where their parents are and what the Department of Social Welfare is doing about it.”

Mazambane added: “This is a serious matter that needs attention so that we take these children back to school. There are also children who are disabled. Sometimes you may find that these children are being loaned to different people for a particular fee to beg for money on the streets.

“We will do a baseline or an inquiry to see the extent of the problem and what is really going wrong, causing these children to be abused. As a commission, we don’t really have to wait for cases to be reported so that we react. So through that project, we want to use our own initiatives so that we look at cases of child labour.”

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