CHILDREN are not only gifts from God, but also constitute the future.
And, for them to be good leaders and form an ethical generation they need decent upbringing and protection. It is unfortunate, however, that children are suffering at the hands of those who are supposed to protect them.
The media are awash with shocking news of child abuse cases. Most of the stories are shocking to say the least as shameless parents and guardians take advantage of the children and abuse them. An Arusha man, Japhet Lindaman (38), recently appeared before the court for defiling his two minor daughters.
As if that was not enough, on the same day and before the same court, another man, James Peter (27), was also dragged for the same offence. Peter is facing charges of defiling his two daughters aged four and six years.
These two examples just but constitute a drop in an ocean as many such and different cases are reported every day.
It is also a fact that there are many other cases just because of one reason or another, go unreported. It is unfortunate that the society in most cases is not forthcoming when it comes to protecting children.
Some families sweep the abuse under the carpet in a bid to protect the image of the family or fearing that if the bread-winner is arrested, then who would provide for them. In other cases children are afraid to report thinking that the perpetrator will harm them.
It is unfortunate that most parents and guardians think that they have the right to discipline in any manner they deem necessary or do anything to the child since they gave birth to him or her.
More still needs to be done to wipe away such mentality from the society. And, this year Tanzania joined the world in commemorating the Day of the African Child on Friday.
The Vice-President, Samia Suluhu Hassan, called for the society to expose all perpetrators of violence against children. She went on to say that these evil doers had no place in the society; they must be exposed by everyone including teachers, parents and police whenever they come across such people.
Tanzanians should join hands in curbing this social anomaly. Everyone should play his or her duty and be vigilant to make sure that child abuse becomes a thing of the past in the country. Let’s, therefore, join hands and kick this retrogressive problem in our country.