A survey conducted by the Mission of Hope Society (MIHOSO), a child centered Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in the Brong Ahafo regional capital, Sunyani disclosed this information.
According to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of MIHOSO, Gabriel Benarku, the six-month survey was conducted in Techiman, Kintampo, Sunyani, Asutitfi, Pru and Jaman North Districts and Municipalities.
He said the diverse culture of the people hindered attempts by the NGOs to eliminate the practice and called for a national campaign against it.
Mr. Benarku said this during the celebration of International Labour Organization’s (ILO) World Day against Child Labour.
He refused to disclose the main towns and villages where the study was conducted, explaining that the disclosure might affect the study.
He however said the findings of the study would soon be published after completion.
The CEO expressed worry about the ages of the girls, which ranged between 15 and 17.
“At the individual level, many of the children we spoke to have experienced poor health, including being anemic and stunted growth,” he lamented.
Mr. Benarku said in some of the communities, especially in the cocoa and cashew growing areas, school children were involved in the worst forms of child labour and sustained injuries due to the lack of protective wear.
He mentioned that other forms of child exploitation had assumed alarming proportions in some parts of the region since several Municipal and District Assemblies had failed to set up panels to discuss issues affecting children.
Mr. Benarkuu used the opportunity to call for a national policy and programmes to ensure the elimination of all forms of child labour, stating that sexual exploitation of children was a serious human rights violation that gravely compromised the integrity, health and development of victims.
“There is no room for complacency when a large percentage of Ghana’s population, especially children, are still labouring to survive with many of them exposed to the worst forms of child labour,” he opined.
The CEO called on the government to urgently intervene to protect, rehabilitate, penalize those found culpable and change certain social norms to ultimately prevent child labour.
Source Daily Guide Ghana