The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has organised a two-day media dialogue in Enugu, capital of Enugu State, with Online Publishers to discuss the convention on child rights which came into force through the UN General Assembly’s resolution 44/20 of 20 November, 1989.
The dialogue, which began Thursday and ending Friday was put together by the child rights information bureau (RIB) of the Federal Ministry of Information, collaborating with UNICEF).
There were 15 selected publishers of Online newspapers from different parts of the country and representatives of major conventional newspapers based in Enugu, as well as some university lecturers in attendance.
A UNICEF Communication Specialist, Geoffrey Njoku, kick-started the discussion by making a run-down of the contents of the convention on the child rights which he said countries of the world signed except the United States of America and Somalia.
According to Njoku, there are four key principles of the Child Rights Convention, including non-discrimination, best interest of the child, life survival and development as well as respecting the views of the child.
He said that the provisions, which are universal, indivisible and accountability, are inter-dependent and inter-related.
At the dialogue, Dr. Chikwendu Ogbonnaya, a public policy advocacy also gave a lecture on special responsibility and public interest in Online journalism practice: defining a public policy for online journalism.
Also, Dr. Abigail Ogwezzy of the University of Lagos gave a talk on perspectives of children’s rights in current online journalism practice in Nigeria while Akin Jimoh of UNICEF Nigeria would deliver a lecture on children’s right and online journalism practice in Nigeria: setting an agenda for children.
The Publishers are expected to end the dialogue looking collectively at the scoping online opportunities for child rights advocacy as well as presenting group work.
The UNICEF Convention describes a child as every human being below the age of eighteen years, unless under the law applicable to the child, majority is attained earlier even as it ask the stakeholders to respect the rights set forth in the convention.
These rights, the convention insists, should be conferred in each child without discrimination of any kind, irrespective of the child’s or his or her parent’s or legal guardians race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national, ethnic or social origin, property, disability, birth or other statues.
UNICE’s Convention urges state to take all appropriate measures to ensure that the child is protected against all forms of discrimination or punishment on the basis of status, activities, expressed opinions, or beliefs of the child’s parents, legal guardians, or family members.
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