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Ondo govt budgets N1.5bn for children intervention programmes

The Ondo State government on Wednesday revealed that not less than N1.5 billion budgetary allocation had been made available for family and children intervention programmes in this year’s budget.

Gov. Rotimi Akeredolu stated this when the International Labour Organisation (ILO), Nigeria Country Office team paid him a courtesy visit in Akure.

Akeredolu, represented by his Deputy, Mr Lucky Aiyedatiwa said he was delighted that ILO Country Office for Nigeria was partnering with the state government to get message on Action Against Forced Labour and Child Labour.

He said the state government had many significant achievements like signing of the Passage of Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAAP) Law to protect people, especially vulnerable children and the Conditional Cash Transfers to Vulnerable households.

He listed other interventions to include the Establishment of the Office of Public Defender (OPD), the Establishment of a State Task Force on Human Trafficking, and the Establishment of the Children and Youth Parliament.

Akeredolu said that not withstanding the achievements, called for more collaboration on improved surveillance to monitor and prosecute offenders of forced child labour.

He appealed for the establishment of more social protection programmes to reduce household vulnerability, the establishment of more skill acquisition centres, and massive public sensitisation on family planning and violence against children and women.

“We are extremely grateful for the partnership, and we look forward to more impactful ones.

“Ondo State government made provision of significant budgetary allocation of not less than N1.5 billion for family and children intervention programmes in the 2023 Budget to help families because poverty is one of the reasons we are having crisis in the country,” he said.

Speaking, the ILO Team leader, Ms Sophie De-Coninck, said the objective of the visit was to have excellent collaboration with the state government and to inform stakeholders about the ILO’s new projects that would be implemented across the country.

De-Connick appreciated Akeredolu for creating an enabling environment in the state for the implementation of the Accelerating Action for the Elimination of Child Labour in Supply Chains in Africa (ACCEL Phase 1) project in the state.

“The objective of the project is to deepen consciousness on Action Against Forced Labour and Child Labour and drive more engagement on child’s rights,” she said. (NAN)

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