The Joining Forces Alliance is saddened by the increased cases of child abductions and killings. The most recent cases are that of Chikondi Banda and Eunice Kamushi, both aged 10, of Garden compound in Lusaka West.
According to media reports, Chikondi Banda went missing on Thursday, 16th March 2023, and was later discovered dead on Tuesday, 21st March 2023, in a maize field near Emmasdale Police station, while Eunice Kamushi went missing last week and her body was found lifeless on Monday 27th March 2023 in Lusaka West.
We applaud the media for their intense reporting of the cases of child abductions and the police who worked swiftly and arrested the suspects.
Joining Forces Alliance stands deeply concerned that some individuals have continued to carry out such inhumane activities against innocent children and continue to rob them of their right to survival and development.
Every Zambian is equally responsible for safeguarding children's welfare, including their inherent right to life. Children must be protected and allowed to live life without fear of being abducted or killed by selfish individuals.
The Joining Forces Alliance is therefore calling upon:
- The Zambia Police to intensify maximum patrols and investigations into the killings. As mandated by the constitution of Zambia, to protect lives and detect and prevent crime, the police service must ensure all perpetrators are apprehended and severely punished. If such cases remain unsolved, Zambia will likely see an increase in the massacre aimed at innocent children.
- In accordance with the law, security wings and law enforcers must quickly act and ensure that justice prevails.
- Parents and guardians must take proactive measures and ensure all children are guided not to follow, interact or accept gifts from strangers. An adult must accompany children below 13 to and from school, when possible. Also, as outlined in the Children's Code Act, every parent has the legal responsibility to protect children and provide parental responsibility.
- Schools and institutions are legally obligated to establish and implement child safeguarding and protection procedures as outlined in the Children's Code Act. Therefore, schools and churches must make sure children are not subjected to any form of violence.
- The media to widen the lens on child abuse cases by reporting more on issues affecting children, especially now that Zambia has a law that focuses on children's welfare.
- Communities are to be on the lookout, protect children, and report suspicious observations to relevant authorities. All citizens must join forces and ensure the lives of children are protected at all costs.
As Joining Forces, we reiterate that we do not tolerate child abuse, exploitation, neglect or violation of children's rights. We are committed to creating and maintaining a caring and protective environment for every child.
As an Alliance, we work under the Convention on the Rights of a Child and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child. Hence, we are committed to ensuring that all children in this country are protected and their lives are preserved.
For more information, please contact:
- Kambani Phiri – Email: Kambani_Phiri@wvi.org or Call: + +260 970 937954
- Mulapwa Mukopole – Email: Mulapwa.Mukopole@savethechildren.org or Call: +260770 837054
- Priscilla Chama – Email: email@example.com or mobile 260 977450009
- Petronella Chindumba – Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call:+260967892901
- Eric Malyangu – Email: Eric.Malyangu@plan-international.org or Call: +260977425015
Notes to the Editor:
In 2017, the six largest child-focused agencies: ChildFund International, Plan International, Save the Children International, SOS Children's Villages, Terre des Hommes International Federation, and World Vision International joined forces. We aim to use our collective power to accelerate change to secure children their rights and end violence against them. We will pilot and scale innovative and effective approaches worldwide and be driven by the voices and needs of children.