By Makhosi Sibanda
THE Zimbabwe National Council for the Welfare of Children (ZNCWC) on behalf of the Child Rights Coalition in Zimbabwe has expressed concern over reports and evidence on the arrest and detention of children accused of public violence.
In a statement on Friday, the council said evidence gathered from member organisations working on the ground show that children have been arrested and detained.
“This has been done without following the international and local standards that uphold children’s rights as enshrined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACRWC), Constitution of Zimbabwe Section 81 and the Children’s Act,” read the statement.
The ages of the children arrested range from 9 to 17 years.
“We therefore urge and call upon the state as the main duty bearer of children’s rights to make sure that measures are taken to fully protect children’s rights,” said ZNCWC.
The council further reiterated that it is the duty of the state to make sure that children’s rights are respected, protected and fulfilled.
“There are measures in place that should be used for the good of children in conflict with the law such as pretrial diversion which is at the disposal of the state,” reads the statement.