Dhaka : Bangladesh President Zillur Rahman on Tuesday urged the civil society to work together for protecting child rights under a single network through creating a social movement.
“Civil society is the conscience of the nation, they will have to step forward to protect child rights,” he said while inaugurating ‘Child Rights Governance Assembly (CRGA) at Osmani Memorial Auditorium here.
CRGA is a civil society advocacy network of 19 development organisations including children and youth bodies that work against child rights violation and promote child rights in
Bangladesh through contributing in government’s actions for good governance.
State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Dr Shirin Sharmin Chowdhury, President of Bangladesh National Women Lawyers Association Advocate Salma Ali, Country Director of Save the Children, Sweden-Denmark Birgit Lundbak and CRGA coordinator Enamul Haque Chowdhury also spoke on the occasion.
President Zillur Rahman said people of all walks of life should come forward unitedly to protect rights of the children through increasing mass awareness across the country.
“Social movement will have to be built to protect and rehabilitate the suppressed and deprived children of the society,” he said.
President urged all family members to give importance on opinion and choice of children and not make any discrimination between son and daughter. “The most important thing is to ensure rights of children inside the family and aware children about their rights,” he said.
Saying country’s mass media and the newsmen are always vocal to promote child rights, The President urged the media to step forward to protect the dignity of children and not publish name of any suppressed or abused children.
President Rahman said the present government is caring and active to build honest, patriotic and energetic future generation through protecting child rights and ensuring overall development of the children.
“The government has taken initiative to formulate National Child Act 2011 by updating the Child Law 1974,” he said.
He said Bangladesh has so far attained some success in this field including achieving UN Millennium Award 2010 for reducing child mortality rate.
Noting that 6.30 crore, 45 percent of country’s total population are below 18 years and termed as ‘young population’, President Rahman said “It’s a population bonus for us and benefits will have to be taken from it.”
The country’s development will be further expedited if these children are turned into skilled manpower by getting quality education, he said. Birgit Lundbak urged the government for
establishing ‘directorate of children affairs’ and ‘commission for children rights’ to improve monitoring and coordination from field level to national level as well as to take a broader role of promoting and monitoring the rights of children.
Later, President Zillur Rahman inaugurated website of CRGA and also unveiled cover of CRGA booklet.
CRGA has been formed to create a common platform for civil society as well as children and youth where they can raise their voices for realization of children rights.