The Kebbi State Government was praised by the United Nations Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF) for enacting the Child Protection Law and asked to give it full execution.
This information was revealed in a statement made available to news media on Monday in Birnin Kebbi by Peter Hawkins, UNICEF’s country representative in Nigeria.
According to NAN, Kebbi State Governor Abubakar Atiku Bagudu recently signed the Kebbi State Child Protection Bill into law at the weekly Executive Council Meeting held at the Council Chambers of Government House, Birnin Kebbi.
During the weekly Executive Council Meeting, the governor also signed the Prohibition of Violence Against Individuals Bill into law.
The Kebbi State Government, according to Hawkins, became the 31st state to domesticate the Nigeria Child Rights Act (CRA), which was passed by the Nigerian National Assembly in 2003.
The envoy for the nation stated that UNICEF thanked the state administration today for enacting the state’s Child Rights Bill, which was approved by the State House of Assembly.
He urged the state government to set aside and release sufficient funds, establish systems for the full execution of the law, and give children the rights guaranteed by it.
“We extend our congratulations to the Kebbi state administration and people on this significant accomplishment. Kebbi State made the proper choice in giving its children the enabling atmosphere to flourish and realize their full potential by establishing laws that safeguard their rights.
“Putting this law in place is a positive starting step, but. By setting up the necessary infrastructure and committing funds for its full implementation, the Kebbi state administration must take the next crucial step.
UNICEF requests that the law be gazetted as soon as possible, Hawkins said.
On its part, he said that UNICEF would keep working with the Kebbi state administration to carry out initiatives that advance children’s rights, such as putting the state’s child rights law into effect.
Hawkins warned other states to swiftly domesticate the Nigeria Child Rights Act if they had not already.
He reminded that the Child Rights Act (CRA), which Nigeria’s National Assembly passed in 2003 and which is based on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), to which Nigeria is a signatory, is expected to be domesticated by all 36 of Nigeria’s States.
However, according to Hawkins, not all of the federation’s states domesticated the statute.
The country representative continued, “Kebbi state has joined the group of states who have a legislative framework through the domestication of the Nigeria Child Rights Act by signing the Child Rights Bill into law.
The Child Rights Act’s state equivalents have so far been passed by 31 states. The domestication of the law is still pending in Adamawa, Bauchi, Gombe, Kano, and Zamfara, five (5) states.
“To support the government at the state and federal levels in implementing laws and policies that address child rights issues, UNICEF, in conjunction with partners, has been doing so. One outcome of such efforts is the Kebbi State Child Protection Law.”