Friday 18 May 2018

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development (FMoWASD), Mrs. Ifeoma N. Anagbogu, officially reconstituted and re-inaugurated the National Child Rights Implementation Committee (NCRIC) on 10th May 2018, in Abuja, in which Save the Children has been selected as a member of NCRIC, together with a few other UN agencies and child focused INGOs. The event came as a huge leap, due to the reason that the last time the Committee had convened was eight years ago.

The Permanent Secretary, who is also the Chairwoman of the NCRIC, said at the re-inaugural event that “Nigeria established the National Child Rights Implementation Committee (NCRIC) in 1994. The Committee is charged with the responsibility of popularizing [international, continental and regional] child rights treaties, reviewing the state of implementation of the rights of the child in Nigeria and the development of Periodic Reports on the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) and the African Union (AU) Charter implementation, among other things.”

It was noted on the occasion, that the Committee, in collaboration with the FMoWASD and development actors,spearheaded the passage of the Child’s Rights Act (CRA) on 31st July 2003.Hence,the Committee has been recognized as a major structure in the implementation of the CRA. Mrs. Anagbogu further said that said that the Committee had not met since 2010 due to funding constraints and it was in realization of the foregoing that the Committee was being re-inaugurated. 

Mrs. Anagbogu added, “addressing issues of girls, children, persons with disabilities and other vulnerable groups is key to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).” The global sustainable development agenda, among other things, focuses on reducing poverty, gender inequality, protection of children from violence, abuse and exploitation. In this regard, the Committee is expected to provide a platform to commence the review of National Child Development Policy as well as National Implementation Plan of Action on the provisions of the CRA.

Amanuel Mamo,Director of Advocacy and Campaign, SCI Nigeria,appreciated the FMoWASD for re-instigating the Committee while he also expressed concerns about sustainability and demanded for an assurance that the Committee would not be interrupted again. Mrs. Jummai A. Mohammed, Director, Child Development Department, FMoWASD, pledged for the utmost efforts and commitment of the Ministry in ensuring that the Committee is active and functional afterwards. 

The re-inaugural meeting of the Committee, which  was financially supported by the British Council and European Union, brought together key professionals in the sector such as: UN agencies, representatives of various federal ministries and Save the Children, among child focused INGOs. A draft Terms of Reference presented by the FMoWASD was unanimously adopted by the Committee and the Secretariat of the Committee is the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, Department of Child Development.

Save the Children remains committed to facilitating activities and policies that will promote Child protection and child rights governance, in a bid to reach Every Last Child.