Monday, April 15, 2024
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More awareness on human rights needed: AG

Attorney-General, Siromi Turaga says there is still a need to create more awareness on human rights values, particularly in the remote, rural and maritime areas.

While opening the first regional office for the Fiji Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Commission in Lautoka, Turaga said our traditional and religious leaders are vital in the dissemination and instilling human rights values in people, particularly, our children and the youths.

“Human Rights education can begin in the homes, in our own communities, in villages, schools, workplace and of course, through robust debates in the Parliament and through public discourses in media.”

“We cannot ignore the fact that we are living in a highly competitive world, today, with extraordinary technological progress, globalisation, which have contributed to growing social injustices and economic inequalities amongst our people, particularly, putting our island nation at high risk.

“Just recently, we have unveiled one of the biggest drug seizures ever, which is becoming widespread and affecting many families and sadly, our children.

“Drugs and substance abuse leads to violation of a Childs rights. The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) stands alone among the core UN human rights treaties in setting out a human right to protection from drugs.

“In particular, Article 33 of the CRC states that ‘States Parties shall take all appropriate measures, including legislative, administrative, social and educational measures, to protect children from the illicit use of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances as defined in the relevant international treaties, and to prevent the use of children in the illicit production and trafficking of such substances.

“Accordingly, I would like to use this opportunity to once again appeal to our traditional leaders, our community leaders and our inter-faith based organizations to join the Government efforts in its war against drugs. We have to save our children from this problem.”

He said while the Government is focused on ensuring that our children, the women, the elderly and the diverse vulnerable groups which includes persons with disabilities, have access to basic social protection and are safe in their homes, schools and at workplace, he is calling on key stakeholders – the community leaders to assist them in identifying the most vulnerable who may be experiencing human rights violations in their homes, schools or any other place – to report those violations to the right agency so help can be afforded to the victims and the perpetrators brought to justice.

Reginald Chandar
Reginald Chandar
Head of News & Sports | news@fijilive.com

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