The use of foreign children to beg on streets in the Kumasi metropolis is done for business purposes, a study by the Department of Children has revealed.
The study conducted in April, this year, under the auspices of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, uncovered that these children were deliberately brought to Ghana from Mali, Niger, Chad and Burkina Faso to beg to make money for their sponsors.
According to the Department, the children whose ages range from six to 12 years, are given a target to make money for their employers.
They operate in areas, such as Pampaso, Oforikrom Traffic Light, Amakom Traffic Light, Anloga Traffic Light, Asokwa Mall Traffic Light and Asafo Market.
Mr Jackson Frimpong-Manso, Assistant Programme Officer at the Ashanti Regional Office of the Department, disclosed this at a multi-sectoral child protection committee meeting in Kumasi.
The programme, organized under the auspices of the Department of Children, brought together key stakeholders such as the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative (CHRAJ), Attorney-General’s Department and Birth and Death Registry.
The rest were the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit of the Ghana Police Service, the Police Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU), Ghana Immigration Service (GIS), Ghana Prisons Service, Department of Social Welfare, Christian Council of Ghana and Department of Community Development, among others.
Mr Frimpong-Manso said because of the risks posed to the lives of these children, the Department was liaising with the Ashanti Regional Security Council (REGSEC) to address the menace.
“What these children are doing is dangerous and counter-productive to their growth, development and safety,” he noted.
He said the Department was committed to working with the relevant authorities to get the children out of the streets.
He said the security and protection of the children were of utmost importance to the Department, hence, the authorities’ resolve to work in their interest.
Mr Stephen Ofosu Darfour, Regional Director, Department of Children, disclosed that the Child Protection Committee constituted under the Department, had created an app to advance the activities of members.
He urged Ghanaians to take the welfare of children seriously.