The Executive Director of Child Online, Awo Aidam Amenyah, has cautioned political parties against the use of children as campaign props to pursue a party-political agenda ahead of the 2020 general elections.
Child Online Africa has said it has taken note of a trend on the internet especially social media which has seen many under-aged persons either being coerced or lured into making political party endorsements or being propped.
Ms Amenya said in a statement on Tuesday September 22 that, “These parties ought to be reminded that much as they do not want minors to vote in the general elections, it is only fair that they also be excluded from all forms and spheres of Electioneering before, during and after the December polls”.
She added that such activities on internet violate domestic, regional, global protocols as well as laws governing the rights of the child including provisions on child welfare as contained in children’s (Amendment) Act 2016 of Ghana. Section 11 of the act of states.
“No person shall deprive a child capable of forming views the right to express an opinion, to be listened to and to participate in decisions which affect his well-being, the opinion of the child being given due weight in accordance with the age and maturity of the child”.
She said there is the welfare principle which states “2. (1) The best interest of the child shall be paramount in any matter concerning a child. (2) The best interest of the child shall be the primary consideration by any court, person, institution or other body in any matter concerned with a child.
The Executive director reminded parents of their crucial role as gatekeepers and the duty of protecting the well-being of the children to restraint political party or association from taking advantage of these young ones.
“We remind parents of their crucial role as gatekeepers who have the responsibility of safeguarding the welfare of children and to caution that they prevent any political party or association from exploiting these young ones in such an undue manner”
She urged the law enforcement agencies the cybercrime and media owners to be effective at this time by acting swiftly to apprehend persons who are found culpable of the offence.
By Sheena Pankani|3news.com|Ghana