Senegal to tighten eligibility conditions for child protection

Senegal has recorded several cases of violence against children in centers dedicated to their protection.Faced with the surge in violence…

Senegal has recorded several cases of violence against children in centers dedicated to their protection.Faced with the surge in violence in child care and protection centers, the state wants to take the bull by the horns. The Ministry of Justice is working on an alternative care program with the institution of foster care.

“In the framework of alternative care, the State will bring together all the sectors concerned in a body so that a study can be conducted. At the end of this work, concrete proposals will be submitted to the State so that there are eligibility criteria for alternative care and foster care,” says the Director of Supervised Education and Social Protection, Habibatou Youm Siby.

Speaking at the celebration of the Day of the African Child, Ms. Siby said “Childhood is a delicate matter. And it is not just anyone who has to intervene when a child has problems.” Hence this program that aims to streamline this sector, which taken over by “unscrupulous individuals.”

“We have the impression that we are witnessing dehumanization with all this violence done on children, innocent people who only needed heart and generosity,” she lamented.

She recalled the case of a European expatriate who, under the pretext of putting an end to the suffering of children in the north-central city of Louga, Senegal, was ruthless with them; an “unacceptable” tragedy that could have been avoided “if the instructors had the necessary means to do their job of control and supervision.

The French national, a certain R. Minguez, is accused of having sexually abused the residents of his center. These were talibé (Koran students) children that he had taken off the streets to put them in his center called “Action in favor of street children.” This structure claims to work for the safety and well-being of street children, in order to give them an ideal living environment.

Arrested last December, the 35-year old French national was prosecuted for pedophilia and carnal knowledge against the order of nature.

Habibatou Youm Siby took the opportunity to call on African states to take, “in a decisive way, the right measure of the deplorable situation of children in Africa; a difficult, even unbearable situation.”

The Day of the African Child is an international day organized every year since June 16, 1991 by the Organization of African Unity, in memory of the massacre of hundreds of children during a march for their rights in Soweto (South Africa) by the apartheid sustem on June 16, 1976.

The theme chosen by the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACERWC) for this year is “30 years after the adoption of the Charter: Let’s accelerate the implementation of the 2040 Agenda for an Africa Fit for Children.”

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