STREETISM IN GHANA: A CONCERN

Streetism in Ghana: A concern

Source: Jerry .J. Afolabi | jelilius@gmail.com | twitter @Afojel | LinkedIN @afolabijelili | WhatsApp +233541238987 | facebook @Afojel
Date: 3rd-october-2017 Time:  1:30:05 am

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Introduction

The President, Former Presidents, the National Chief Imam, Metropolitan Catholic Archbishop of Accra, the general overseer of ICGC, the general overseer of Action Chapel Internation,Corporate Ghana, the Media, Honored Ladies and Gentlemen of our country, I am calling on you today in our own interest, to contribute to finding lasting sustainable solutions to a problem that confronts our country.

A problem that we can collectively solve when we all put our hands to the wheel.

The street children problem, a serious social problem that can only get worse, unless there are speedy interventions from both government and citizens of our country.

The Concern

We cannot leave the safety and security of our country under the peril of surging numbers of street children in our cities, due to poverty, irresponsible parenthood, neglect and abandoned children without care. It is a concern that poses threat to our country and that is why we have called on the media, corporate Ghana and the respective stakeholders of our country to partner with us CHANGE MAKERS to deepening the awareness in the public, second, to come up with interventions and preventive measures to ensure that they don’t get back on the street but become useful citizens of our country.

As a son of the land, I am more concerned about the safety and security of our country and it is our sole responsibility to collectively find lasting sustainable and progressive growth solutions to the problem of STREETISM and any other social problem that confronts us as a people. We can only become competitive in the global economy as a country only when we invest into building the capacity and innovative skill of our people through education for all no matter who they are or where they from.

The hard truth although it hurts, is when we don’t collectively work at it now and they continue to flood our streets with a rising social vices i.e. crime, prostitution and even exposure to tourist activities, we should bear in mind that it’s the tax we pay that will be used by government to deal with it, that is why we need to find lasting solutions to deal with it now and here because if not us who and if not now when?

We are defined by the efforts we put into ensuring that children realize their full potential, where they are not limited by who their biological parents are; which ethnic or religious belief they belong to but creating an economic environment that would ensure freedom and justice for all children to succeed.

I believe that if we make it our collective responsibility, our country will be safe from crime, prostitution and even illiteracy will experience a drastic reduction. Permit me to acknowledge the bold step taken by the President and His government to rollout and implement the ‘FREE SHS POLICY’.I say Ayekooo!!!!

The good thing is that the economic progress we working at can be realized faster when we act now and investors will see our country as safe grounds for huge foreign direct investments which would translate into a growth in the tourism industry as well.

I am a strong believer of success for all without leaving anyone behind and I know that our collective efforts can unearth the talents in these street children which we can harness on for a speedy growth in our country. Ghana is our home and the earlier we realize that and act the better for us and generations yet unborn.

The values that bind us together are greater and more firm than those that separate or divide us. We cannot politicize every issue that impacts negatively on our safety and security, and it’s the reason why I have extended a hand to all the political affiliates in our country for a bi-partisan approach to dealing with street children issue in our country. We are strong together and are better placed to deal with this issue when all hands get on deck.

Every day as I journey through the main streets of our capital, I see young school going children on our street, who if not begging, are either cleaning the windscreen of cars or just sitting under the traffic lights, and others are either sleeping on the pavements, bus stops or at the shopping malls. The worrying concern is that these numbers are increasing each day and not much is done about it and for the other cities, the least talked about them the better.

I get worried each day and you must be worried too because the streets, shopping malls, marketplaces and the bus stops are claiming the future of these young ones who are the future of our country, that is the more reason why we need to act fast and now.

The neglect of these children as a result of the INDIVIDUALISM and CARE FOR YOUR OWN ALONE is worrying and may impact severely on the progress we seek to achieve as a country. All children are our responsibility no matter who their parents are because when it gets out of control, we will all suffer the pain and none of us there is immune to the dangers that they pose to us and our country.

Someway somehow we may have distant relatives who may have gone through these phases before or may go through in the future if we do not act now. We must see ourselves in the children on the street because we are all one people, so we cannot look the other way.it is our responsibility and we must not forsake them.

We should see these growing numbers of street children as a shared responsibility that needs partnership to solve, why because its impact on all of us, we should no longer see it as a sole responsibility of government again but rather one which needs our collective efforts to dealing with it.

Let there be no doubt in anyone’s mind, that our efforts cannot combat these rising numbers of street children in our cities and villages. We will win because we have the capacity and the resources to curbing it. The future will be more prosperous and safe when we ensure that the future of these children is better and safe, why because we are all Ghanaians and this is our home.

Conclusion

I say to you that if anyone doubts our capacity and resolve in dealing with this issue and any other that affects our country, tell them that we have always won despite the divisions, disagreements in opinions and our faith, we will win again.

We have an unlimited wealth of knowledge and ideas to combating this national issue. I believe in the stakeholders of our country and their continuous efforts to ensuring the safety and success of this nation. Yes, we will do it together as we have always done because it is within our power to do something about it.

Thank you and GOD BLESS YOU ALL; GOD BLESS THE REPUBLIC OF GHANA.

JJ.AFOLABI

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