UNICEF Nigeria has congratulated the Kebbi State Government on signing into law, the state Child Rights Bill given out by the state House of Assembly.

In a statement issued by the agency, the children’s fund also called on the state government to allocate and release sufficient resources as well as put in place mechanisms for full implementation of the law to grant children the rights declared in it.

The Kebbi State Child Protection Bill was signed into law by the state Governor, Abubakar Bagudu, at the weekly Executive Council Meeting at the Government House in Birnin Kebbi recently.

The governor also signed into law, the outlawing of Violence Against Individuals Bill during the weekly Executive Council Meeting.

According to the statement, the UNICEF Representative in Nigeria, Peter Hawkins, “We congratulate the government and people of Kebbi State on this momentous achievement.

“By providing legislation that protects the rights of its children, Kebbi State has taken the right decision to provide its children the enabling environment to thrive and reach their full potential.

“Putting in place this law is good, but just the first step. The Kebbi State Government must take the next important step by putting in place structures and allocating resources for its full implementation.

UNICEF called that the law be gazetted without delay, Hawkins added.

The statement further called on the state governments that are yet to domesticate the Nigeria Child Rights Act to do so without any further delay.

In 2003, the National Assembly enacted the Child Rights Act (CRA), which is derived from the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) to which Nigeria is a signatory. All the 36 states are expected to domesticate the law. Thirty-one states have so far enacted the state equivalents of the Child Rights Act. Five states are yet to domesticate the law, which are Adamawa, Bauchi, Gombe, Kano and Zamfara States.

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