The International Labour Organisation estimates that 152 million children are victims of child labour worldwide.
ILO has said that half of that number, 73 million children aged between 5 and 17 years, work in hazardous child labour.
The ILO figures further show that the majority of child laborers in the whole world are in Africa, with the continent accounting for 72 million in child labour.
Meanwhile Panos Institute Southern Africa has noted the need for close collaboration among stakeholders to arrest child labour which remains rampant in Southern Africa.
The Organisation says there is need for communities, schools, the private sector, traditional leaders, government agencies, and the media to enhance their efforts to end child labor.
Lillian Kiefer, the Organisation Executive Director said in a statement that her organisation views child labour as one of the major setbacks to the realisation of children’s goals, as it denies them access to opportunities for personal and professional development.
The World Day Against Child Labour is commemorated annually on 12th June and this year’s commemoration is under the theme: Children shouldn’t work in fields, but on dreams!
Mrs. Keifer said Panos views child labour as one of the major setbacks to the realisation of children’s goals, as it denies them access to opportunities for personal and professional development.
She said that in most rural communities, it is almost normal to see children going to work in the field before going to school, and after they return to school or not going to school altogether to work in the fields and this is of great concern.
Mrs. Keifer said that Child labour is a gross violation of children’s rights, as it has gross and far reaching physical and emotional effects on the children.
She has since endorsed the World Day Against Child Labour theme that children should not work in the fields, but they should be supported to work on their dreams.
Mrs. Keifer said Panos is currently working with various stakeholders to advance the protection of children from abusive practices such as child labour.