We must establish appropriate social protection systems for children – Bright Appiah

Child Rights International Executive Director Bright Appiah has called for an effective social protection system that guarantees the well-being of children in the country.

He said the social protection system must aim to prevent children from engaging in forced labour.

Mr. Appiah said so in an interview with Benjamin Akakpo on the Morning show Tuesday.

The discussion came at a time when new data from the 2021 Population and Housing Census indicates that a total of 229,628 children between the ages of 5 and 14 are engaged in different forms of economic activities in Ghana.

JoyNewsInvestigations also revealed how children are being trafficked for GH¢1,000 to work on cocoa plantations in Elluokrom in the North West region and other parts of the country.

Based on these, Bright Appiah urged stakeholders to urgently consider different ways of addressing children’s issues.

“It’s up to us as a state to be able to come back to look at how best to shape some of these things to reduce the number of children involved in economic activities.”

“The figure should give the state the feeling that if the majority of your children are involved in economic activities, although we expect them to be in school, it is time to think that we must adopt a different approach in terms of how we want to deal with issues that concern our children.

“There’s a whole bunch of social protection systems that we have to put in place, so when we roll it out, we would do it in a way that it’s very systematic and it follows a certain social safety net. “, did he declare. .

The child rights activist acknowledged that while steps are being taken to rescue some children involved in trafficking and forced labour, more emphasis needs to be placed on the sustainability agenda being implemented in the sector. cocoa.

“They shouldn’t even be there at all. This is why it is important that we look at the dynamics that exist and the type of system that we can provide,” he insisted.

Joel C. Hicks