BY PETER KOMBE
Mombasa County civil society activists want the government to create awareness and sensitise the citizenry on the contents of the Children’s Act.
In their views, very few parents know the existence of this law and this is attributing to the ever-increasing teenage pregnancy in the county and country at large.
“It is good to respect morals in society. Some parents have very little knowledge of the children’s policy as envisaged in the constitution,” the activists stated.
Speaking to the media at Kisauni Development Project (KICODEP) in Mombasa on Friday (July 5, 2019), the Dream Achievers Youth Organization programs coordinator Enos Opiyo says there is a need for parents to take charge of their children’s upbringing.
“The aim of this forum is to inculcate value based education in schools. We want to see how children can be modelled to become useful members of society,” he adds.
The organisation’s executive director Seif Jira attributes the increase in incidences of insecurity in the County to poor parenting.
Kongowea location chief Yasmin Omar says there is need for civic education in order to stop the rising cases of teenage pregnancy there (Mombasa North).
“As administrators we are concerned about the education of our children that is why we want parents to be involved in their children’s upbringing,” she adds.
She laments that teenage pregnancy is a big challenge that requires teachers, parents and local administration to work together to stamp out the menace.
The administrator calls on the government to conduct an intensive public awareness campaign to sensitize the public on the Act.
“This will be beneficial to the minors (girl or boy) caught up in the teenage pregnancy crisis to receive special teachings or counseling,” she says.
A Majengo village (Island area) elder Mustafa Salim village accused parents of failing to take keen interest in their children’s education that is a basic right.
According to him education, security and drug abuse still remain the biggest challenge in the entire county.
Meanwhile, the Institute of Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK) has raised concern over the ballooning public debt in the country.
The ICPAK chair Rose Mwaura, speaking on the sidelines of the debt management seminar at Travelers Beach Hotel in Mombasa, said the current Ksh 5.4 trillion nominal debt was an economic strain to the general public.
“There is a need to enhance accountability in public and private sectors to free more resources to development. The government must decisively deal with wastages in utilization of public resources,” she said.
As a way of ensuring that the public debt remains sustainable, the chair said there was need for stronger strategies to enhance revenue collection, sealing all tax loopholes apart from widening the tax base.
According to her domestic debt stands at Ksh2.70 trillion while the External one stands at Ksh 2.72 trillion.
She noted that the Annual Public Debt Management report by the National Treasury indicated that the ratio of debt service to revenues increased to 33.8 per cent by the end of June 2018 compared to 23.6 per cent by end of June 2017.
“There is a consensus that prudent public debt management can help economies takeoff and achieve sustainable development. However, the Institute is concerned with the recent spike in public and publicly guaranteed debt for Kenya,” she added.
The chair called on a speedy conclusion of the revenue stalemate between the national and county governments for year 2019/20 warning of its serious dangers on the implementation of budgeted development projects.