However, a lot of work had been done to address sexual exploitation

Responses by the Delegation

The delegation said Zambia had engaged children across the country to provide views to be adopted within the eighth national development plan. This had been done in collaboration with civil society. When it came to children, Zambia’s laws initially looked for kinship care as a top priority. Where this was not possible, the next alternative was foster care or adoption. If this was not possible, institutionalisation of the child was the last resort. Regarding a visit by the Special Rapporteur on toxic waste, there were no restrictions in Zambia to his visit. Another request should be put in during the meeting and it would be attended to.

Zambia was reviewing numerous policies and looked on this as a key time to maximise children’s participation. Children had been engaged, and child participation was specified in the child code bill. The child participation framework was being developed, which would outline how children would be involved. When developing the eighth national development plan, children around the country were consulted for their views. The delegation noted that the tourism sector would need to be included further, as there was a growing concern in this space regarding the growing number of child exploitation cases.

With respect to customary law, which indicated that once a child reached puberty, they could get married, there were provisions in the law which indicated that custobian Law Commission was managing the process to ensure a way to eliminate the marriage of children under the age of 18; there would be a harmonisation of the age of marriage. Consensus had been reached with traditional leaders that there was a need to do away with child marriage, however, this needed to be formalised. The national position was to try to do away with the custobia was currently the champion of ending child marriages under the African Union, with this being a high priority under his leadership. (más…)