PESHAWAR: The National Commission on the Rights of Child held a one-day Consultation on Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Legislative Reforms on KP Child Protection and Welfare (Amendment) Bill, 2020 with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Legislators.
The Consultative meeting was attended by the Speaker Provincial Assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mushtaq Ahmed Ghani, Chairperson National Commission on the Rights of Child, Ms. Afshan Tehseen, NCRC Members Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Dr. Jahanzeb Khan, NCRC Member Sindh, Iqbal Ahmed Detho, Members Provincial Assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Ms. Ayesha Bano, Ms. Sajida Hanif, Dr. Sumaira Shams, Ms. Ayesha Naeem and Ms. Rehana Ismail.
With the violence against children surging in Pakistan, the consultation was aimed to discuss the proposed amendments in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Child Protection and Welfare Act with special committee on child abuse.
One of the major objectives of the Consultation was to strengthen the coordination between the National Commission on the Rights of Child and major stakeholders including policymakers to work effectively on child related legislations for the promotion and protection of children in the country and to strengthen the child protection systems in KP to address the issues of child abuse more effectively.
Speaker of Provincial Assembly Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mushtaq Ahmed Ghani lauded the efforts of the National Commission on the Rights of Child and its progress on promotion and protection of child rights in the country.
Chairperson National Commission on the Rights of Child, Ms. Afshan Tehseen reiterated her resolve to make the Commission one of the swiftly working bodies in Pakistan. She emphasized that children of today are the future of tomorrow and a national commitment was necessary to ensure safeguard their rights.
Keeping in view the increase in Child rights violation cases the amendments in the KPC PWA 2010 was the need of the hour so that the offenders involved in these cases were brought to justice.
In the proposed amendments in the Act, it has been attempted to make the KP Child Protection and Welfare Commission as an oversight, advisory and monitoring body by delineating its functions from Provincial Social Welfare Department.
The functions of service delivery and implementation of programs have to be assigned to the Social Welfare Department. The proposed amendments related to sale of organs of child, punishment for child pornography, exposure to seduction punishment, child trafficking, child sexual abuse and maintaining the registry of such sexual offenders has been discussed in detail while keeping in view the compatibility with constitutional and national legal framework on the subject.
The Chairperson NCRC called upon all the stakeholders to put children on the top most priority for protecting their rights being almost half of the country’s population. This could only be achieved when children would be given priority in the national plan of action through provision of adequate budget and its proper utilization through providing functional and efficient child protection systems at the grass roots level.
About NCRC, the Federal government has constituted the National Commission on the Rights of Child in exercise of powers conferred by Section 3(1) of the National Commission on the Rights of Child Act, 2017 (XXXII of 2017) under a notification issued on February 28, 2020.
The Commission has an overarching mandate in accordance with international obligations and for matters related to the promotion, protection and fulfilment of child rights as enshrined in the NCRC Act 2017.