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CLCCG 8th annual meeting in Abidjan

CLCCG 8th annual meeting in Abidjan
The First Lady presents the efforts of the Government of Côte d'Ivoire
CLCCG 8th annual meeting in Abidjan
CLCCG 8th annual meeting in Abidjan

Côte d'Ivoire will host from 17th to 19th July 2018, the 8th annual meeting of the Child Labor Cocoa Coordinating Group.

The launch ceremony of this quadripartite meeting organized by the United States of America, the Government of Côte d'Ivoire, the Government of Ghana and the cocoa and chocolate industries took place on Tuesday, July 17, 2018, at the Sofitel Hôtel Ivoire in Cocody.

 It was presided over by the First Lady, Dominique Ouattara, who is also President of the National Oversight Committee for Fight against Trafficking, Exploitation and Child Labour (CNS).

Created in 2010, this is the first time that the CLCCG holds its annual meeting in a country other than the United States. It is at the invitation of the First Lady that the various stakeholders in this organization will meet for 3 days in Abidjan, the economic capital of the world's largest producer of cocoa.

 The 8th edition of the annual meeting of the CLCCG is on the theme: " Building Momentum : Accelerating good practices to combat child labour in the cocoa sectors in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana ".

The opening ceremony witnessed the presence of Ms. Martha E. Newton, Deputy Undersecretary for International Affairs at the US Department of Labour, Honorable Ignatius Baffour Awuah, Minister of Employment and Labour Relations of Ghana, Ministers Pascal Abinan Kouakou, Minister of Employment and Social Affairs and Bakayoko Ly Ramata, Minister for Women, Family and Children.

 

Progress made towards the fight against child labour in cocoa farming

Leading the discussion on child labour issue since 2012, Mrs. Dominique Ouattara shared with her guests the progress made by Côte d'Ivoire against the phenomenon. To this end, she mentionned actions taken by the government since 2012 not only to guarantee the rights of children and to provide an appropriate response to child labour in cocoa farming.

"Eliminating child labour from the cocoa production chain in our countries is neither a slogan nor a mere statement. It is a collective responsibility that requires strong commitment and determination from all stakeholders "she said.  Mrs. Dominique Ouattara focused her approach on three (03) areas namely prevention, child protection and repression.

In the field of prevention, Mrs. Dominique Ouattara mentioned the organization of campaign of communication, information and sensitization of the public at the national level, the training of the actors involved in the remediation process, the adoption of the law on compulsory school for all children from 6 to 16 years old, the construction of thousands of classrooms and school infrastructure, strengthening bilateral cooperation with neighbouring countries.

For this last framework, she mentioned the signing of bilateral agreements between Mali, Burkina Faso and Ghana and the hosting of the First Ladies Conference of West Africa and Sahel in Abidjan which brought together 17 countries.

As part of child protection, she mentioned the construction of three (03) children's homes, the first of which was built in ​​Soubré. In the area of ​​law enforcement, she mentioned the adoption of a specific law on the prohibition of the worst forms of child labour, and the adoption of the list of light work allowed to children between the ages of 13 and 16; and the list of hazardous work prohibited to children.

 

 

Martha E. Newton, Deputy Undersecretary for International Affairs at the US Department of Labour, congratulated First Lady Dominique Ouattara for her leadership. She reiterated that the US government is willing to work with all social components to curb child labour in the cocoa production chain.

Honorable Ignatius Baffour Awuah, Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, outlined the efforts of his country to end child labour in cocoa plantations.

Pascal Abinan Kouakou, Minister of Employment and Social Protection and President of the Interministerial Committee for Fight against Trafficking, Exploitation and Child Labour (CIM), reiterated the commitment of the Ivorian government to eradicate child labour in cocoa farming.

Tim McCoy, Vice-President of the World Cocoa Foundation (WCF), thanked First Lady Dominique Ouattara for her actions to eliminate child labour in cocoa farming. Several panels will take place during this meeting. The closing ceremony is scheduled for Wednesday 18th in the afternoon. A visit to a school field is scheduled for Thursday, July 19 in Adzopé.