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Concern raised over child labour in Bomet

Parents found engaging underage school-going children in casual labour will be dealt with in accordance with the law.

Bomet County Commissioner (CC), Beverly Opwora, speaking during an interview with KNA, Saturday, noted that some parents in the County have been engaging school children in income generating activities, including tea harvesting and running boda boda business, contrary to the law.

Opwora said government officials were on high alert, even in the remotest parts of the region and will not hesitate to nab all culprits involved in the malpractice.

“It has come to our attention that some parents are engaging school-going children in manual jobs, which is against the laws of this country, ” she reiterated.

“As the County Security Team, we are going to patrol the entire County and any parent found culpable, will face the full force of the law,” added the County Commissioner.

This comes barely days after the Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT), Bomet Branch, noted with concern that child labour was impacting negatively on education standards in the region.

Opwora urged parents in the area to desist from this vice, terming it as retrogressive and contrary to both the Children Act and the Education Act of Kenya.

“Any parent doing this is not only disregarding the two Acts, but also depriving the affected children their right to education, “she said, adding that the government has invested heavily in funding free primary and day school education, to enable every Kenyan child access education.

The County Commissioner also cautioned parents against engaging school-going children in boda boda business at the expense of their education.

“We have been conducting public forums to sensitize residents on the importance of educating their children, to make them better leaders for tomorrow, we are urging you to stop child labour, but if you fail to listen, then the law will finally catch up with you, ” warned Opwora.

Meanwhile, Chiefs in Konoin Sub-county have rescued a number of children from the highland tea farms and enrolled them back to school.

By Lamech Arisa

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