Neno District Commemorates Day of African Child

Children carrying placards with different messages Children carrying placards with different messages - pic by Steve Kalungwe

Players in child protection and education in the country have been urged to prioritize and advocate for access to the digital environment like e-learning by primary school learners in a bid to allow the children to have limitless learning environment and walk with time.

Speaking in Neno during the district's Commemorations of the Day of the African Child, Community Action for Sustainable Development Organisation (CASDO) programs manager Francis Chapasuka says with limited learning materials in most schools, there is a need for government to invest heavily in the use of internet where both learners and teachers can have easy access to learning materials on the internet.

Chapasuka observes that in most schools, there are few text books and this puts the children to a disadvantage where they fail to compete effectively with other learners in private school.

"This theme we have chosen today is in line with the international aspirations of wanting to provide quality education to all and it was chosen by a committee of experts where they want learners to have access to education through the use of the internet", said Chapasuka.

He nonetheless appeals to the authorities to ensure that the internet is not bringing moral decay to the learners by employing measures that will allows for only education related materials to be uploaded and downloaded from the internet.

Neno Children's Parliament speaker Triphonia Kaduya while welcoming the move, says there is a need for enforcement of the cyber security act bearing in mind that a lot of people have fallen prey to evil minded people on the internet.

She says with the change in time, children especially primary school learners should be accorded the chance to expose themselves to the modern world through the use of the internet but also not to be exposed to undesirable materials such as explicit images and videos.

"We have to advocate for the enforcement of the cyber security act and enough teacher training if we are not to be bullied and exposed to undesirable materials while surfing the internet for learning.

She further called for the introduction of internet services even in secondary schools saying there is a possibility of establishing international connections which are vital for one’s exposure and intellectual growth.

This was echoed in by Neno district council chairperson councilor Mark Ngwangwa of Lisungwi ward who called on the police to effectively manage crimes of cyber security and appealed to learners themselves to be responsible enough in the use of the services.

But in response, Neno police station officer in charge Hanleck Chingolo appealed to parents and learners to report to authorities like school management and the police on any suspected cases of cyber security offences.

Neno District Commissioner Hudson Kuphanga told Zodiak Online later that his office will engage different parts to help in the idea saying his council understands the importance of the internet with the fast-changing world.

The Day of the African Child was made possible with financial support from NORAD through Save the Children International under the theme "The Rights of the Child in the digital environment. It was held at Chikonde Model Primary school football ground.

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