Traditional Authority Ndakwera of Chikwawa has disclosed that he will soon put in place a committee that will work to deal with increased cases of child labour in his area.
Chief Ndakwera made the remarks on Friday during commemoration of Child Labour Day which took place in his area.
The chief noted that more children were employed to do some piece works in homes of some rich people which prevented them from going to school.
“We must admit that we, indeed, have noted an increase in child labour here. Sad enough are some well educated people who take advantage of our children by employing them in various fields.
“So, we plan to initiate a committee that will look into all this. The committee will as well deal with parents of those children that do not go to school,” stated Ndakwera.
The chief further said the committee will comprise traditional leaders teachers and those from the business community.
He further warned perpetrators of child labour in his area that their time was over and that once found, the law will play its part.
Commenting on the development, Regional Labour Officer for the South, Lenius Daiton said there was need for collaborative efforts to end child labour.
He said government wished to see child labour eliminated by 2025 and that any job that restrains a child from attending school vanishes from any community in the country.
“More kids are engaged in charcoal production and other small scale businesses. But we all need to be aware that child labour kills a nation and must be stopped.
“We call for a full participation of all concerned stakeholders in this. And let’s all support the committee that will be established here so that our children are saved from this modern day slavery,” said.
On his part, Chikwawa District Council Chairperson, Clement Kamoto who was also Guest of Honour to the event called on parents and all guardians to stop sending their kids to work for other people, saying doing so was like killing their future.
He hailed Chief Ndakwera for planning to initiate a committee that will help eliminate child labour in his area, an idea which showed the traditional leader was committed in ending child labour.
Kamoto further called on law enforcers to act on some perpetrators which will send a signal to others that child labour is unacceptable.
“We need all our children to be in school and let me call upon all our partners to give us the necessary support,” he said.
The day which was commemorated under the theme: “Children shouldn’t work in the fields but on their dreams” was supported with resources from Illovo, Unitrans, Malawi Red Cross, CRECCOM, Nchalo Green Belt and CADECOM among others.
By Steve Chirombo – MANA