Day of the Namibian Child Has Become Irrelevant – Finnies

THE commemoration of the Day of the African Child at the Namibia Children’s Home in Windhoek on Saturday was poorly attended.

The day celebrates the rights of the Namibian child and is observed on 28 September. This year’s theme was ‘Child-friendly, quality, free and compulsory education for all children in Africa’.

Speaking during the commemoration at the home, the deputy speaker of the Children’s Parliament, Shaandre Finnies said the day has lost its relevance in Namibian society.

“This day is not valued as it should be and is not as widely celebrated as I would like to see it celebrated after 24 years of independence,” he said, adding that his message to the policy-makers is clear – ‘make us feel involved, make us feel cared for, do all of this during the Day of the Namibian Child’. Speaking about the Child Care and Protection Bill (CCPB) that was tabled in parliament last week and will be debated today, Finnies said he cannot imagine that there is any political party that does not know how important this Bill is.

“My concern is not the Bill being debated, it is the Bill’s implementation. Our government has numerous policies, but the implementation has always been an issue, and I would like to see proper implementation of the Child Care and Protection Bill across the board,” he stressed.

The Child Care and Protection Bill among others aims to address issues pertaining to children’s social grants, protective measures, child trafficking, the domestic adoption of children, foster care and custody and guardianship upon the death of a person who has guardianship over the child. Finnies also called on children to help fight poverty.

“It is up to you and me to fight poverty, and to come out of this current status. We all know that education, discipline, respect and making sure you follow the right path are the way out of this,” he stated.

The chief whip of the Children’s Parliament, Norman Ndeuyeeka ,who was one of the keynote speakers at the event, called on children to be more responsible when it comes to their education.

“We are all from different backgrounds, different families and all have different ambitions, and therefore respect is most important. We must also remain humble,” he said.

There was entertainment in the form of drama, performances, song and dance.

Source : The Namibian