Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong has called for formulation of policies to safeguard children against all manner of vices including defilement, trafficking, neglect and abandonment.
The Governor said the damning reports from the Children’s Department on the emerging trend of children being trafficked between Busia Kenya and Uganda was a cause for worry.
” My Government will engage other sector players and see which policies we shall formulate that will assist in ending this vice and hold public barazas with the village administrators,” he said.
He was speaking in Busia on Tuesday when he met a team from the African Network for Prevention and Protection of Children Against Child Abuse and Neglect (ANPPCAN) and the County Children Services Department who had paid him a courtesy call.
Busia County Co-ordinator Children’s Services Esther Wasige said four cases of children being trafficked from the county are reported every week with others going unreported.
” The department in partnership with ANPPCAN is exploring ways and means of legalizing alternative family care programs including Foster placement, kinship care and guardianship.
We also have bursary programs where Sh1.2million is distributed per constituency to Orphans and Vulnerable children annually,” she said, adding that a total of 734 children have benefitted so far from the programs ranging from Sh10,000 and Sh30,000 per child.
ANPPCAN Country Director Aggrey Otieno said they have launched three programs including Child Headed Household program to be launched soon is geared towards supporting children who are living on their own or with very elderly parents or are orphans.
” The other programs that are already in operation include parents economic empowerment where the organization is funding 103 groups with at least 30 members each to undergo training, with Sh64m circulating among the group members.
The last program we have in Busia County is child participation which is being undertaken in 15 schools. This is aimed at teaching teachers and children on how to report cases of abuse,” he said.
Also present included Deputy Governor Moses Mulomi, CECM for Culture, Youth and sports Bernard Yaite, Chief Officers Joy Wanga (Youth and Sports), Andrew Otiti (Deputy Governor’s Office), Chief of Staff and Private Secretary to the Governor Sebastian Okiring and Director Public Administration Robert Muganda.
Chairman County Assembly Committee Culture and Sports Patrick Obuya pledged full support in terms of policies on children brought before the House.