Saturday, 27 June 2015

Day of the African Child: “Secure a Pride of Place For African Child ”- Emeka Odikpo

As the world celebrate ‘Day of the African Child, Radio Nigeria Enugu National Station in partnership with United Nation International Children’s Emergency Fund ‘A’ Field Enugu organized a road show to educate Enugu communities on the essence of the Day.

Addressing parents and students from various schools at the radio station’s Sam Nwaneri Pavilion, Mr. Emeka Odikpo, Zonal Director Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria, Enugu State explained the theme of this year’s edition “25 Years After The Adoption Of African Children’s Charter: Accelerating Our Collective Efforts To End Child Marriage In Africa.” 

“The theme of this year’s edition of the Day of the African Child is very apt, going by the level of challenges faced by children in African today where most young girls are married off even before they attain the age of eighteen.”

He highlighted that reports have also shown that one out of nine girls in developing countries are married before the age of fifteen, and if the trend continues, more than one hundred and forty million girls will be married before their eight birthday yearly.

Mr. Emeka Odikpo however called for an accelerated effort on the part of individuals and groups to secure a pride of place for the African Child.

“Girls’ Education is Vital”-UNICEF Nigeria
“This year 2015 our attention is deeply focused on the girl child and the challenges of child marriage.”

Mr. Charles Nzuki, Chief of UNICEF Field Office, Enugu State disclosed this in a press release in commemoration of the ‘Day of the African Child’.

“Child marriage erodes the capacity of the girl child from attaining her full potential in life and must be stopped because it brings harm to the society.”

He stressed that education of girls remain the strong key to unlock the stranglehold of child marriage.

“Girls education is vital because educated girls become better mothers, have fewer and healthier children and more empowered.”

 The Chief Field Officer submitted that efforts of UNICEF, its partners including that of individuals will help to end child marriage and allow them to complete their full course of education before marriage.

“A Mother’s Opinion”- Loveth Chieze

General Manager of Radio Nigeria and Coal City FM Enugu, Mrs. Loveth Chieze has described “Day of African Child” as a day of sober reflection on the murder of young students in Soweto, South Africa.  

In her own view, Mrs. Loveth said “Children are future leaders of this country and we must have to treat them aright. We must have to let them know that they mean so much to us.”

“Today, we are simply celebrating our children and encouraging parents to give their children the opportunity that are to due them. Good education, healthy life, respect among others are the right of children” she added.

“A Child’s Voice”

“I feel so glad that a day like this is set aside to celebrate the African Child” 

A student of Union boys Secondary School, Jeremiah Okoro expressed his excitement over the commemoration of the day and the uniqueness of the theme ““25 Years After The Adoption Of African Children’s Charter: Accelerating Our Collective Efforts To End Child Marriage In Africa.” 

Jeremiah explained that “Child marriage is very bad and will not encourage parents to push their teenage girl into marriage as a result of their poor family condition.”

Shedding light to misconception about Child Marriage that is usually associated to Muslims, Sekinah Umoh, a nine year old girl enunciate that “Many people perceive Islam as a religion that encourages Child Marriage, No.”

“A female child is only allowed to get married when she has reached age of puberty and understands marital affairs” Sekinah explained.

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