Children drawn from Central and other regions of Uganda, on Wednesday condemned the act of parents and child traffickers, from Karamoja sub region, continued sale of children, at Arapai market, in Soroti district, as though the children are livestock.
The children voiced their concerns on Wednesday, during the National Symposium for the Day of the African Child, held at Kampala Hotel Africana.
In a children debate, organized by World Vision and the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, the children said the act of parents sailing their children at Arapai market, for as low as Shs 50,000 is not only criminal in nature but violates the rights of children to life, education and parental care.
“The right to education, health, food and protection are basic freedoms for children all over the world”. Said Babirye Kirabo, a Primary seven Pupil from Kitante Primary School, while contributing to the debate, whose motion was dubbed; “More or less has been done to protect children rights”
Ministry of Gender Commissioner for Youth and Children Affairs; Mondo Kyateka, said there are over 100, 000 children living in the streets of Uganda’s major towns.
He said this is due to parental neglect and mistreatment of children, yet the children are what he termed as “A gift from God”.
He said government, in partnership with development partners is committed to rendering support to children, the elderly and those living with physical disability.
Diana Tibesigwa, the World Vision Policy Campaign Officer, said the purpose of the symposium is for the children to document their problems, which will then be put across during the marking of the Day of the African Child on Sunday, at Omoro district, in Northern Uganda.
Jeremiah Nyaga, World Vision Operations Manager, said ending violence against children is World Vision five year program.
“Domestic violence against children is key to our struggle. We need a better future for the children”, he said.
The symposium was run under the theme: “Humanitarian Action in Africa: Children’s rights first”