Caption:Hon. Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Mr Jioji Konrote speaking at the launch of the Phase II of Tackling Child Labour through Education project in Suva .Photo:SUPPLIED.
The Child Labour Unit at the Ministry of Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations has successfully withdrawn 179 children who were employed as child labour in worksites throughout Fiji.
This was highlighted by the Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Hon. Jioji Konrote at the launch of Phase II of Tackling Child Labour through Education project in Suva today.Mr Konrote said most of the children have been placed in educational institutions with the assistance of the Department of Social Welfare and the Ministry of Education.
“The overall objective of TACKLE Phase II of this Project is to sustain efforts to progressively eliminate child labour within Fiji. The project is designed to improve the capacity of national and local authorities to formulate, implement and enforce policies to fight child labour, and strengthen mechanisms for continued tripartite partners’ dialogue in addressing the issue effectively,” Mr Konrote said.
Mr Konrote said to address the issue of child labour, Government gazetted a first ever regulation – “Hazardous Occupations Prohibited to Children under 18years of age Order” in May 2013.
“The Bainimarama led Government is fully committed to ensuring that the fundamental rights of all Fijian children enshrined under Sections 31 and 41 of the 2013 Fijian Constitution are safeguarded and upheld.“Children are to be given the best possible care and protection and as parents and leaders, we are obligated to assist them develop and grow up into educated, responsible and productive members of our society. We should endorse and fully support this TACKLE Project to ensure that our young children are learning and working within the safety of the classroom and not slaving away in a factory or job site,” Mr Konrote stressed.
TACKLE II will be implemented in Fiji over the next two years by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) in partnership with the European Union.This will be done in collaboration with the Ministries of Employment, Education and Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, other key stakeholders and civil society organisations.