Pakistan’s prime minister marks Universal Children’s Day by reaffirming pledge for protection of child rights to education, healthcare
The incumbent Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-led government is committed to ensuring the protection of children’s rights nationwide, Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Friday.
In a statement marking Universal Children’s Day, he said that Pakistan stood with the global community in reaffirming its duties to children as laid down in the Constitution, the U.N. Declaration of Human Rights, and the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child.
“Children are the most precious resource of any nation and the sole guarantee for its future,” he said. “The Government of Pakistan is fully cognizant to its responsibilities towards our children, and is determinedly striving to ensure that child’s rights to inclusive development, education, healthcare, participation, dignity and security, as envisaged in the U.N. Convention on the Rights are implemented,” he added.
Noting that the incumbent government had initiated various programs to ensure protection of children’s rights in Pakistan, he said this was also reflected in the manifesto of the PTI. “A National Commission on the Rights of Child has been set up which monitors child rights situation in the country. Two children, a girl and a boy have been given representation in the Commission. The Zainab Alert, Response and Recovery Act, 2020 has been enacted for the protection of missing and abducted children. The Juvenile Justice System Act, 2018 and ICT Child Protection Act, 2018 have been enacted to provide care and protection to children,” he said.
Similarly, he added, the PTI prioritized childhood nutrition, child-friendly learning environment, education for all, and promoting early screening and interaction for children with disabilities. “The present government has also initiated programs like healthcare for all, transforming education and unleashing the potential of the youth,” he added.
The prime minister also hailed the government’s expansion of a social safety net for the impoverished, and its commitment to providing clean drinking water and tackling climate change. “Besides, a caring system for people with special needs is also being created,” he said, adding that measures were underway to ensure rule of law and economic justice.
Khan said the government was seeking to build a welfare state that would guarantee transparency for all citizens. “The creation of a violence-free society, and ending child abuse is one of the present government’s priority areas, among others, as the future of Pakistan lies with our children,” he said, noting that the state was also tackling COVID-19 to effectively mitigate its adverse effects on people.
“I reaffirm my pledge for protection of child rights in the country, enabling them to become productive members and citizens of the society and the state, respectively,” he said. “I am confident that with government organizations, civil society bodies, philanthropist establishments, human rights groups, the corporate sector and international development partners all coming together on one platform, no difficulty will be insurmountable, and very soon our children will also enjoy the same care, nurturing, protection and opportunities that are available to children in the more advanced nations of the world,” he added.
Universal Children’s Day is commemorated on Nov. 20 annually to mark the anniversary of the adoption of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Child. First established in 1954, it seeks to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improving children’s welfare.