The Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) on Wednesday launched a handbook on Child Labour in commemoration of the 2011 celebration of the World Day Against Child Labour.
The book titled “Child Labour in Ghana” sought to educate Ghanaians and stakeholders on the causes, effects and measures in curbing the menace.
Mr Enoch Teye Mensah, Minister of Employment and Social Welfare, launching the book lauded GNAT for the initiative and its commitment towards the elimination of child labour in the country.
He noted that efforts were underway to review the Children’s Act to bring it in full compliance with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Convention 182 on the Worst Forms of Child Labour.
Mr Mensah commended the international community for its technical and fiscal support to the country in the fight against child labour.
“After sustained support from the ILO since 2001, we as a country are proud to have finalised the development of our own national Plan of Action (NPA) for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour by 2015,” he added.
Mr Mensah pledged government’s commitment towards the total elimination of child labour because it had a critical economic scope that impacted negatively on national and international trade and relations.
He said the Ministry of Employment and Social Welfare had already begun implementing the National Programme for the Elimination of Worst Forms of Child Labour in cocoa growing areas which would be extended to fishing communities that made use of child labour soon.
Mr Mensah announced that government had developed the Ghana Child Labour Monitoring System that would track incidences of child labour and also help in curbing the menace.
“This system will also facilitate effective child labour interventions by identifying child labourers and linking them to satisfactory and sustainable alternatives such as schooling and skills training,” he explained.
He cited poverty and irresponsible parenting as the root causes of poverty and urged parents to be concerned about the wellbeing of their children.
Mrs Irene Duncan-Adanusa, General-Secretary of GNAT, noted that her outfit was very much interested in the education of children and achieving academic laurels, hence their interest in the fight against child labour.
“We all know that where child labour thrives, education suffers. Let us work in eliminating this canker,” she noted.
She called for the establishment of more public schools, especially in areas prone to child labour in an effort to curb it.
Mrs Duncan-Adanusa intimated that the book would be a useful tool for stakeholders keen on eliminating child labour from the system.
The book which has six chapters is forwarded by Mrs Duncan-Adanusa. The first chapter talks about concepts and variants of child labour in Ghana; the second chapter is about the role of government in the elimination of the incidences of children dropping out of school and child labour.
The third chapter discusses the role of organised labour in the elimination of child labour, whiles the fourth chapter deals with the activities of the teacher and teachers’ unions towards the elimination of child labour.
The fifth chapter deliberates on the role of communities in combating child school dropouts and child labour, while the sixth chapter discusses the role of parents and children in the reduction of school dropouts and the elimination of child labour.