The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Borno State has called on community and political leaders to work towards the prevention of child rights violations, adding that 2,013 children have been cleared of alleged association with armed groups since 2016.
The UNICEF Chief of Borno Field Office, Phuong T. Nguyen disclosed this in Maiduguri on Wednesday during a consultative meeting with local government chairmen in Borno.
Nguyen added that 2,188 children have been released from conscription with support from the European Union on fundings, another by the Civilian Joint Task Force.
While condemning the impact of armed conflict in the north-east on children, Nguyen asked stakeholders to support the reintegration of these children back to their communities.
Nguyen also stated that religious leaders should “publicly condemn and continue to advocate ending and preventing violations and abuses against children, in particular those involving the recruitment of children into armed groups, rape and other forms of sexual violence against children, abductions, attacks and threats of attacks against schools and hospitals.”
Hussein Alio, Project Manager with International Organisation for Migration, while speaking at the event asked the chairmen to support the nine Social Cohesion platforms in their respective communities.
He added that for every reintegrated child, two vulnerable members of the community are empowered.
“We are seeking your support for timely notification of the date and time of taking beneficiaries back to their various local government areas. We also want you to coordinate with the military in your locations for possible clearance to enable beneficiaries stay in their community of return,” he said.