Note: Friends I wrote this piece 3 days ago and we have been battling to upload it due to bad internet access. In Africa simple things may become difficult, when the state of nation beckons and men and women instead of resisting it, gravitates towards it. Please bear with us.
‘In 2003 the cause of the Nigerian child received a major boost when a draft, Child’s Rights Bill aimed at principally enacting into Law in Nigeria the principles enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the AU Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child was promulgated as the Child’s Rights Act, 2003.’
Hello friends, sure you are doing splendid today. My heart is full of joy as I sit down to do this piece of inspiration based on equipping the custodians of the child to do all in the best interest of the child. I hope we are finding this daily elixir worth the time.
Today, I will like to continue where I stopped yesterday. I began to share with us the laws which are critical to the respect of the rights of the child. I already shared international law. Let me proceed to local laws.
On the home front, I must state that the chief of all the other laws that protect the rights of the child is the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Please note, every other law in the land receives its legitimacy from the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
In 2003 the cause of the Nigerian child received a major boost when a draft, Child’s Rights Bill aimed at principally enacting into Law in Nigeria the principles enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the AU Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child was promulgated as the Child’s Rights Act, 2003.
What is an act, you may want to ask?
According to the 1999 Constitution an ‘Act’ or ‘Act of the National Assembly means any law, which takes effect under the provisions of this Constitution as an Act of the National Assembly while ‘Law’ means a law enacted by the House of Assembly of a State.
As I round up today, permit me to share with you what I consider to be the high points of the Child’s Rights Act:
It is ‘AN ACT TO PROVIDE AND PROTECT THE RIGHTS OF A NIGERIAN CHILD; AND OTHER RELATED MATTERS.’
It settled the contention as to who a child is under the law. According to Section 277 of the Act, a child is anyone below the age 18.
Sections 19 and 20 incorporate the responsibilities of children, which I will shed more light on in the weeks ahead on this page.
The Act consolidates all laws (including National and International Laws) relating to children into one single legislation.
It specifies the duties and obligations of government, parents and other authorities, organizations and bodies.
The Act was divided into 277 Sections, twenty-four (24) parts and eleven (11) schedules.
The various parts address broadly
rights and responsibilities,
protection and welfare of children,
duties and responsibilities of government institutions for children,
other miscellaneous matters.
The schedules for their own parts deal with rules, regulations, procedures and specified forms for applications and decisions.
For the Act to be enforceable in a State is must be passed into law by the House of Assembly of the State
As at today 24 states have passed the Act into Law. The 12 states that are yet to pass the Act into Law are: Enugu, Kaduna, Kano, Sokoto, Kebbi, Borno, Yobe, Gombe, Adamawa, Bauchi, Katsina, and Zamfara.
I must say that it your responsibility dear friends to become a self-appointed whistle blower in your state if the Act has not been passed and where it has been passed see to it
that its provisions are enforced.
Our time is up. Please join me tomorrow as I continue to inspire you to respect the rights of the child. Do have an INSPIRED Day.
I’m Taiwo Akinlami & I Lead the TeacherFIRE™ Revolution
POINT 2 PONDER:
‘What is an act, you may want to ask? According to the 1999 Constitution an ‘Act’ or ‘Act of the National Assembly means any law, which takes effect under the provisions of this Constitution as an Act of the National Assembly while ‘Law’ means a law enacted by the House of Assembly of a State.’
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