National Council passes Child Care and Protection bill
18 Dec 2014 16:10pm
WINDHOEK, 18 DEC (NAMPA) The National Council (NC) on Thursday passed the Child Care and Protection Bill.
It was passed to give effect to certain rights of children as contained in the Namibian constitution.
The much-awaited Child Care and Protection Bill offers a legislative framework to advance some of the rights of children which are yet to be fully-recognised, such as the right to foster care as well as the establishment of a National Advisory Council for Children.
It also makes provision to cover the costs for funeral arrangements of vulnerable children in order to lift the burden off the shoulders of many parents who cannot afford to accord their children decent burials.
Another amendment included was the right to newborn babies not to leave the hospital without a birth certificate, or to be allowed to get the birth certificate even with only one parent present.
The Vice-Chairperson of the NC, Magareth Mensah-Williams said the Bill is meant as a 'Christmas present' for the Namibian child.
National Council member and Katutura Central Constituency Councillor Ambrosius Kandjii said on his part that the environment in which children are living in Katutura - especially in constituencies such as Tobias Hainyeko and Samora Machel - is not conducive for their upbringing.
He thus called on all stakeholders involved in the fight for the rights of the Namibian child, including the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare and the Namibian Police (NamPol) to join hands in ensuring that the country is moving in the right direction in that regard.
The NC had, prior to passing the Bill, held consultations with various stakeholders in the Khomas, //Karas, Hardap, Erongo and Omaheke regions between 08 and 12 December this year.