IEBC To Conduct Children Assembly Election At KICD.
Children in Nairobi County will gather today, Tuesday, April 19, at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD), to express their opinions on issues affecting them and to elect their leaders.
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) will conduct the Assembly’s election, which will take place from April 19th to 21st this year.
The children will vote to elect governors, deputy governors, the speaker, clerk, and Sergeant at Arms, as well as 44 delegates, who will serve two-year terms.
At least 11 Nairobi sub-counties, including Mathare, Makadara, Njiru, Kibera, Langata, Dagoretti, Kasarani, and Embakasi, have elected representatives in the ongoing elections.
Speaking to KNA about the upcoming event, Nairobi County Coordinator Children’s Services Mr. Hoyd Isadia stated that the purpose of the Assembly, which began in 2014, is to provide children with a platform to air their views and provide input into policies affecting children’s affairs.
Mr. Isadia stated that the opportunity has empowered children to create a memorandum on education, making it easier for children to access bursaries.
“This platform is important as it enables the children to contribute their views through public participation,” said the County Coordinator.
“The gains of the Children Assembly has brought leadership elections in schools, and given children life and leadership skills,” Isadia added.
He stated that members of the Assembly aged 11 to 17 are chosen to serve on the four sub-committees, which include Survival, Protection, Participation, and Development, and that the committees’ findings are presented to the National Assembly to inform policy.
The Survival Sub Committees deal with birth certificates, health, medical, vaccines, and nutrition, whereas the Protection Sub Committees deal with child labour, trafficking, child and drug abuse, online sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, neglect, physical abuse, female genital mutilation, and harmful cultural practices that affect children.
The development addresses issues such as informal and formal education, spiritual development, parental guidance and love, play and leisure, and assisting children to develop, whereas participation focuses on issues that children can speak up about.
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Ms Valentine Maole, a Children’s Officer in the Nairobi County Coordinator’s office, stated that the County has special issues that require a lot of attention in terms of child protection and safeguarding policy in the areas of street children, child labor, disabled children, and child abuse.
“These are areas where the children’s voices can be raised and give an input in the policy before it becomes law,” said Maole.
She also stated that, in order to prevent online child abuse among children, the Children’s Department will continue to educate and inform them about the channels through which such incidents can be reported.