Statement by the High-Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini on her phone conversation with President Adama Barrow of The Gambia
Jan 23, 2017, 11:04 AM
All children irrespective of who they are, and where they come from, deserve protection, care and support.
However, despite numerous measures taken by the government and local organizations and some parents, exploitation and abuse of children is still a cause for concern in the country.
Though services have been designed to protect children and young people who are under-age, and to encourage parents to meet their moral obligations towards their children, the hard fact is that more children are at risk.
This is the case, simply because not only strangers perpetuate this on them, but even their close associates and, in some cases, family members.
As a country, we must intensify our individual and collective efforts in investigating alleged child abuse cases, and ensuring that our future leaders are well protected.
Failure to take adequate measures to safeguard children from harm would have a devastating effect on their growth, physically and psychologically.
Child sexual abuse is another form of child abuse in which an adult or older adolescent uses a child for sexual pleasure.
It is real, and we must not take things for granted, as it seems to be happening within our corridors. If we fail to report and punish the offenders, we will not be doing justice to them.
Offenders are more likely to be relatives or acquaintances of their victims than strangers.
This is worrying, and must be stopped sooner rather than later.
To this end, we commend the Child Protection Alliance and all its partners for spearheading the protection of children over the years.
Such moves will promote child welfare at the community level, thus reminding parents and guardians of their moral duties towards children.
Child protection is indeed not a new phenomenon!
Protecting children from any sort of abuse is a duty of every citizen