By Albert Futukpor, GNA
Accra, Dec 07, GNA – The Legal Resources Centre (LRC), a human rights Non-governmental organisation, has held a day’s training workshop for selected personnel of the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) to build their capacity on the rights of children.
The training was also to enlighten the personnel of the GIS, who were drawn from the Greater Accra Region and border control posts, to employ innovative and advanced methods to properly handle children in conflict and contact with the law, issues on trafficking of children, docket preparation and handling.
They were taken through applicable laws such as the Human Trafficking Act, 2005 (Act 694), the Juvenile Justice Act, 2003 (Act 653), Criminal Procedure Code, 1960 (Act 30) and the Children's Act 1998, (Act 560) currently being amended.
It formed part of a three-year project dubbed: “Justice for Children: Bridging the Gap between Legislation and Practice”, being implemented by the LRC with funding from the European Union.
Selected Judges/Magistrates and court Clerks/Interpreters across the country, Prisons Officers of the Senior Correctional Centre and Social Welfare Officers of the Junior Correctional Centre and Officers of the Ghana Police Service have also benefitted from a similar training organised by the LRC.
Mr Enock Jengre, a Project Officer at the LRC, who spoke during the training in Accra, observed that children suffered the worst form of abuse, discrimination and violations of their fundamental human rights.
He said data from the Courts indicated that a number of children in conflict with the law were being processed through the formal justice system, particularly in the Northern Region.
He said those cases were normally reported to the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Ghana Police Service adding however, that DOVVSU had no direct mandate to handle such cases, and they were normally handled by the regular police system “and in some cases, some of the children were put in adult cells, violating their rights in conflict with the law”.
He touched on the need for stakeholders to support the GIS to fight child trafficking within and outside the country as the practice affected the progress of the affected children and the country at large.
Mr Robert Tettey Nomo Junior, a Project Officer at the LRC took participants through how to use a case reporting software, which was developed by the LRC to assist children in conflict with the law.
Participants were entreated to report any case of a child in conflict with the law for legal assistance/representation through www.justice4children.app.GNA