Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

Child abuse - an impediment to country's development

Lanka’s children: their well-being must be ensured

CHILDREN'S RIGHTS: In Western countries, where their citizens enjoy relatively high standards of living, the protection of children's rights and welfare is given high priority.

Unlike in many Third World countries such as India, Thailand and Sri Lanka where child abuse in varying forms is very common and the measures taken by the State institutions to combat this menace is quite inadequate, most of the Western countries' strict implementation of stringent laws with heavy penalties imposed on the offenders without consideration of any distinctions such as rank or status, have been very effective in eradicating this cankerous evil from their soils.

It is ironic as push button civilization generally offers its citizens bright prospects of enhancing their status very specially in the Western countries, this naturally entails hard work with long hours, by the employees and in this set up children are left alone to find their own devices of enjoyment without being subjected to parental supervision.

In developed countries, the State institutions play an active role in looking after these children by operating a chain of child-care centres with modern facilities and well qualified teachers to supervise and monitor the progress of these children.

Undoubtedly, their service is quite professional as they are quite committed to provide these children an excellent service, apart from sparkling their lives with a lot of fun, care and attention.

However in contrast, many Third World countries, which are saddled with the heavy burden of abject poverty, and also with widespread corruption which is rampant in the State sector effectively hindering the strict implementation of these laws which are tailor-made to protect the interest of children's rights.

There have been many instances in the past, the culprits of child abuse who hold high ranks in the State or private sector, intimidating the important witnesses with dire consequences who as a result of these threats decline to give evidence at a court of law against these offenders.

In the Third World countries the total eradication of child abuse should be considered a Herculean task.

In some of these Third World countries verbal abuse is accepted as a deterrent, or a corrective measure of keeping the children under control, or away from mischief and in the same token physical and sexual offenses against children are tacitly accepted as a harmless fancy to be tolerated, very specially when their guardians are financially benefited by the offenders' reciprocal gestures of generosity.

It is an open secret that many foreign paedophiles roam quite freely in the sandy beaches in the South of Sri Lanka searching with an Eagle's concentration to trap their young victims, well guided and aided by a phalanx of pimps and in some instances by some unscrupulous hoteliers who give their nodding approval to these nefarious activities well-knowing that these quaint foreigners are quite willing to pay them handsomely for their labours and enterprising spirits.

It must be admitted that in many Third World countries, the law enforcing authorities who are entrusted with keeping a tag on the offenders who brazenly commit these offenses, do not get enough support from the community very specially when these offenses are committed by foreigners.

Besides, the lack of officers to engage in surveillance of such culprits' activities, also have a negative effect in curbing this wide spread practice.

Unfortunately some powerful offices in the State and private sector go to the extent of rationalizing the whole process as a "Necessary evil" to be tolerated, as it brings much needed foreign currency to these impoverished countries and also help the villagers to better their standards of living without which aid they would have to live with the prospect of being constantly subjected to malnourishment and starvation.

As children will inevitably become our future citizens who will be called upon to take a collective responsibility in the democratic process by electing, their political representatives to the legislative bodies, the political leaders of these countries cannot and should not shy away from their moral responsibility of protecting our children from predators who brazenly commit such heinous offenses, for it would certainly have a detrimental effect on their mental growth.

If this menace is not tackled with a firm resolve, the future leaders of these countries would be incapable of making any judicious and beneficial decisions, ensuring progress of their countries is not hampered in any way due to their stunted growth.

Otherwise it is not surprising that they would naturally act like puppets on a string, in which adverse climate, immorality would be given a decree, to engage in an idiotic pursuit of vanquishing spiritual and moral values as irrelevant and obsolete, thus plunging these countries into an abyss of living hell propelling towards total destruction.

To sum up, a moral stand on this issue should be taken without considering the probable economic setbacks, which may ensue in the short-term as it would go a long way to uplift the morale of our children, thus making their outlook positive and well-balanced, ensuring it would accrue a rich harvest of benefits to the nation in the foreseeable future.

Undoubtedly it would be compatible with our indigent value system based on strong and stable family ties which has given us impunity to face many challenges with stoic equanimity.


Gamin Gamata - Presidential Community & Welfare Service
Sri Lanka

| News | Editorial | Financial | Features | Political | Security | Sport | World | Letters | Obituaries | News Feed |

Produced by Lake House Copyright © 2006 The Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd.

Comments and suggestions to : Web Editor