The President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, has reiterated the commitment of the 8th Senate and the National Assembly to work toward the eradication of child-labour in Nigeria.
Saraki made the affirmation in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Yusuph Olaniyonu, on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said this on the occasion of the 2018 World Day against Child-Labour, which calls for promoting integrated strategies to end hazardous child-labour, ensure quality education for all children and address the menace.
“Today, we reiterate our stance on eradicating child-labour in Nigeria.
“Globally, according to the International Labour Organisation, over 152 million children are engaged in child-labour, while UNICEF estimates that in the poorest countries, one in four children are engaged in child-labour.
“From what we know, Nigeria has over 10.5 million out-of-school children, the highest in the world.
“This implies that millions of children across the nation are engaged in child-labour, hawking and working under appalling conditions instead of being in school.
“This is not acceptable. This 8th Senate will continue to remain committed to issues of child’s rights, violence against children and child-labour.
“This is why since we took office we have worked on reversing this trend by collaborating with the state houses of assembly to push for domestication of Child’s Rights Act across the nation.
“What is more important is that as we work towards the domestication of the Child Rights Law at the state level, we must also push for better law enforcement of existing legal frameworks.
“We must also work towards raising more awareness about our obligation to defend the rights of children,” he said.
The president of the senate also stated that senate, through its oversight powers, would continue to work toward ensuring more effective coordination among ministries and agencies of government that deal with child-labour issues and human trafficking.
“We remain concerned and we remain committed.
“Protecting our children from abuse and all forms of exploitation must be a priority of all public office holders,’’ he said.