Rwanda police urges parents, local leaders to intensify child protection

Rwanda police urges parents, local leaders to intensify child protection

Rwanda National Police (RNP) has called upon local leaders and parents to take the lead in implementing child protection policies and programmes.

The call was made on March 9 in Rulindo District where police officers reacted on a recent case of a girl who dropped out of school at the age of 12, left her family in Base Sector to Burera District, without either the consent or knowledge of her parents.

Apparently, her family didn’t bother to follow up her whereabouts.

It turned out about a year later that the girl was working as a house-help and who was later to be impregnated by a barber.

The case that police refers to as  “child abandonment, child labour and defilement” was reported recently.

The girl is currently under Police care at Isange One Stop Center which assists the victim jointly with Marembo Centre, a non-Governmental Organization that works with young girls and teenagers, who have been rescued from the streets or dysfunctional violent homes.

On March 10, 2016 when the RNP Mobile Police Station van was taken to Rulindo, the vice mayor in charge of social affairs, Claire Gasanganwa, Supt. Modeste Mbabazi and Inspector of Police (IP) Angelique Uwamwezi from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) appealed to parents and hundreds of residents to always report such incidents immediately they take note of them.

Gasanganwa noted that the government has put in place numerous measures to protect and promote the rights of children in all spheres, with the “priority put on education and health” among others.

The government one cow per household programme – Gir’inka – she added was partly put in place to benefit even the poorest families in order for their children to get milk and alleviate malnutrition and related ailments.

“Almost all the policies and programmes meant to protect children’s rights are supposed to be implemented by parents, local leaders and even the general public but it’s so unfortunate that some people  have ignored them while parents also go beyond to violate them by abandoning their children,” Gasanganwa said.

Supt. Mbabazi singled out Base as one of the areas that are prone with gross abuse of drugs and illicit brew, which he said contribute to child neglect.

One of the residents Phocas Twahirwa, a resident of Base, who is among the people that filed a complaint at the mobile station van, thanked the police for its services and appealed to fellow residents to collectively work with their local leaders and police to address challenges children face.

Twahirwa noted that some children are dropping out of school to “work in mining concessions and chores jobs in homes under the watch of their careless parents and guardians,” which everyone should fight. He also urged residents to report to police people, who employ minors.


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