HRCM expresses concern over laws protecting rights of children

Human Rights Commission of the Maldives (HRCM) has expressed concern that the laws on the protection of the rights of children do not specify a punishment for those who are negligent towards children.

In a statement released by the commission on Friday on the occasion of Children’s Day, the commission noted that Children’s Day is marked to educate people on the rights of children, and to encourage the establishment of a peaceful environment for children.

Stressing on the importance of assuring their rights and the provision of a good education and upbringing, the commission noted that children should be given the opportunity to grow up as healthy and fit children.

Although a special law has been stipulated to deal with pedophile sexual offenders, no repercussions have been established within the law for those who are negligent toward the welfare of children, which subsequently poses a challenge in ensuring that the rights of children are fully protected, noted HRCM.

Several cases of mental, physical and sexual abuse of children and cases of negligence were presented to the commission within the last year, in addition to cases of misusing the authority over children for personal benefit and conflicts between parents, noted that commission.

The commission further stressed on the importance of expediting the bills presented to the parliament on protecting the rights of children and the bill on juvenile justice in order to further ensure the protection of children. In their statement, the commission also emphasized the importance of ratifying and implementing existing laws.