12th February, 2012
The United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, and the National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, have agreed to scale up partnership in their effort to promote and protect the rights of the Nigerian child.
UNICEF Chief Child Protection Officer, Noriko Izumi, who disclosed this during an official visit to the commission, stated that there was an urgent need to properly monitor, document and report violations of the rights of the Nigerian child.
In a press release issued by Mr. Muhammad Nasir Ladan, Director of Public Affairs & Communications at the NHRC in Abuja, the commission stated that UNICEF is working hard to improve on the existing child protection networks in the country and intends to build more partnerships to achieve the desired results.
According to the UNICEF official, only 23 state-based child protection networks exist in the country presently, but regretted, however, that none of the centres could provide the necessary data documentation required for field work.
Mrs Izumi therefore appealed to the National Human Rights Commission to partner with UNICEF to establish functional child documentation centres for references.
In his remarks, the Executive Secretary of National Human Rights Commission, Prof. Bem Angwe assured Mrs. Izumi of the Commission’s readiness to consolidate on the existing partnership with UNICEF.
Prof Angwe who had worked closely with UNICEF before assuming office as the Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission said the commission will continue to work with UNICEF to document and report violations of children’s rights throughout the country.
The Executive Secretary disclosed that the commission will open additional offices across the country before the end of the first quarter of 2012 and said all the commissions’ offices will be deployed to strengthen child protection networks across the country.
By Nnamdi Felix/Abuja