Seventy-two million African children are estimated to be engaged in child labour, of which 31,5 million are working in hazardous environments, prostitution, and domestic work.

This was said by the National Programme Officer for Gender Responsive and Pro-Employment Budgeting of the UN Population Fund, Natalia Halweendo, at the commemoration of the Day of the African Child.

Halweendo added that although child labour deprives minors of education and childhood, it is a decent course as it is mostly done in helplessness.

"We know child labour rarely happens because parents are bad or do not care; rather, it springs from a lack of social justice. The antidote to poverty-driven child labour is decent work for adults, so they can support it as an instrument to combat child labour and promote the human capital development of children and their parents through enhancing access to decent work opportunities."

The Chairperson of the Basic Income Grant Coalition of Namibia, Herbert Jauch, added that the Day of the African Child enhances the rights of children, their wellbeing, and the fight against poverty.

"No one needs to go through a dustbin to look for food; no one needs to sleep on a hungry stomach; no one needs to sleep under plastic in the rain or cold."

Rosa Namises, the founder of Dolam Children Home and Women Solidarity, was also present at the occasion.

"I also want to say sorry on behalf of our elders that we are sorry that we don't provide you with enough, but that should stop, and you should make your noise so that it can be heard. I am also sorry that adults are violating your rights."

"People will make you feel less of yourself where you come from. We embrace our culture. We have Oshiwambo, Herero, Damara, and many more. So be proud  because no one will accept you before you."

The event was organised by the Basic Income Grant Coalition of Namibia.




Maria Kaalushu