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Professionals advised against sexually exploiting the vulnerable. Mr Christopher Lartey, the Principal Programmes Officer, Department of Children, has called on professionals to refrain from taking advantage of their positions to engage in sexual activities with the vulnerable in society.
It was imperative for all professionals to abstain from using their “gowns” for sexual exploitation or abuse since doing so was against nature and national laws, he said.
Mr Lartey, at a training to build the capacity of the Regional Child Protection Committee in Ho, stated that victims of such acts suffered emotional distress and lost of faith in the profession of the perpetrators.
The majority of people, unfortunately, did not take sexual exploitation and abuse seriously, giving room for weaker members of society to be taken advantage of, which was unlawful, Mr Lartey said.
He told the Ghana News Agency that the Child and Family Welfare Policy placed a high value on traditional and religious leaders as essential partners in child protection and, therefore, urged them to assist in protecting children.
He said safeguarding children’s rights was the Department’s responsibility, and that it would keep working to provide an atmosphere that allowed children to reach their full potential to ensure a secured future for them.
Mr Augustus Awity, the Chief Director, Volta Regional Coordinating Council, noted that members of the Committee needed to develop their capacity to carry out their mandate effectively.
He tasked the Committee to do everything within its power to advance and defend children’s rights for the benefit of the nation.
Mr Israel Akrobortu, the Volta Regional Director, Department of Children, said they were poised to ensuring that the rights and wellbeing of children were promoted and protected.
Madam Eyram Thywill Kpe, Volta Regional Director, Department of Gender, said gender relations had been identified as one of the main contributing factors to child marriage.
UNICEF and the United Nations Population Fund came out with the Gender Transformative Accelerators to change gender relations to address these relationships and stop child marriage.
Madam Kpe revealed that due to Ghana’s constant handling of child marriage, it was one of the 12 countries implementing the global programme to tackle the issue.
The country still needed to do more to combat child marriage because one in five girls currently got married before turning 18 years, she added.