Chief Commissioner for the Ghana Girl Guides Association, Mrs Juliana Ofori-Kissi, has warned politicians against the use of children, especially those below 18 years, in political activities.
She observed the vulnerability of such children expose them to ‘cohesive exploitation’ and patronage by politicians who use them for their selfish interests.
Mrs Ofori-Kissi gave the warning Monday when she announced the selection of Ghana as the host of a Regional Seminar by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) in Accra next month.
The week-long event is expected to be attended by some 100 delegates drawn from the 146 member states of the world association.
The seminar, dubbed the Juliette Low Seminar (JLS 2016) is WAGGS’s flagship leadership development programme for young women aged between 20 and 30 years, providing them the opportunity to develop their leadership skills in a creative, supportive and inspirational environment.
The prestigious seminar is named after Juliette Gordon Low who introduced Girls Scouting to the United States of America with the very first seminar taking place in 1932 in the USA.
Mrs Ofori-Kissi said Ghana was chosen to host the event because of the association’s tremendous achievements which have geared towards the development and advancement of the girl-child.
“Aside sharing and learning best international practices, the seminar will also market Ghana to the entire world as well as build on the high reputation of Ghana on the international platform in terms of tourism, social development and as an adherent to child protection treaties, laws and protocols”, she told journalists.
She commended government for support towards the successful hosting of the international seminar but urged more assistance.
The Chief Commissioner of Girl Guides also commended the Ghana Police and the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection for recent efforts to rescue children from the streets.
She was however worried that despite numerous interventions, the issues of child labour, child trafficking, child prostitution and children hawking remain a worry to all stakeholders.
“As a child-centered organisation, we wish to call on government to make a conscious decision to see to the full implementation of both the Children’s Act of 1998 and the Free Compulsory Universal Basic Education (FCUBE). That way, we will be safeguarding the future of this country”, she said.
The association has been in Ghana since 1921 and currently has over 20,000 members in schools and communities across the 10 regions.
The JLS 2016 takes place from May 30 to June 6 at the Girls Guide National Training Center at Achimota in Accra.