Islamabad October 12, 2012: Child Rights Movement Pakistan held a peaceful protest walk against the brutal attack on Malala Yousafzai and her friends condemning this vicious and cowardly act of attacking an innocent child rights activist. Members from different local and international NGOs , academia and human rights activists were a part of the protest walk from Islamabad Press Club to Constitutional Avenue.
Recognizing Malala’s struggle for right to education for children particularly for girls and remembering her commitment towards the cause where she said “I would like to establish an education foundation and promote education particularly for those children who are in child domestic labour”, CRM demanded the federal and provincial governments in general and the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in particular to immediately introduce legislation in order to implement Article 25-A of the Constitution of Pakistan about right to free and compulsory education for children of 5 to 16 years of age.
The inspirational 14 years old child rights activist Malala Yousafzai has given a wakeup call to the Pakistani state and society rethink our priorities towards child rights in general and the right to education in particular and above all for girls. It is high time that the federal and provincial governments also look into the issue of gender disparity in education and ensure that parity is achieved between the number of girls and boys particularly in the backwards areas of the country including FATA.
Malala Yousafzai’s struggle for child rights reminds both the federal and provincial legislature to immediately pass all pending bills related to child rights in Pakistan said members of the CRM. They urged the government to establish a focal body to monitor the implementation of the child rights standards in Pakistan, which, being a part of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), is our constitutional and international obligation to save are young heroes like Malala Yousafzai from dange.
Following the 18th Constitutional Amendment in which child rights were made a provincial subject, the establishment of a body for maintaining minimum standards and providing technical assistance becomes pivotal. It is sad to note that the bill of NCRC is pending since 2009 without any progress towards its enactment,
CRM urged the government to make child rights legislation a top priority so that children could have a bright future in a child-friendly Pakistan. They said that it was enough of terrorism and violence against people. Members of Child Rights Movement called attention to the Child Protection (Criminal Law Amendment) Bill 2009 which is still pending to be passed.