The Ministry for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation fully recommends that Fiji ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of Children in Armed Conflict.
While presenting to the standing committee, the Ministry they are committed towards ensuring that all children grow up in a safe and loving family and are supported to reach their full potential.
Fiji ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1993, which sets out standards and protocols to safeguard rights and welfare of our children.
As a signatory to the CRC, Fiji is obligated to submit state reports to the Committee on the Rights of the Child.
The Ministry of Woman in their presentation argued that the Constitution of the Republic of Fiji 2013, Chapter 2, Bill of Rights, section 41 emphasizes that it is the right of every child being protected from abuse, neglect, harmful cultural practices, any form of violence, inhumane treatment and punishment, and hazardous and exploitative labour.
The submission also addressed that the political crisis situations in the past may not have had direct implications on children, but they would have been faced with indirect implications with families losing livelihoods, undergoing trauma due to civil unrest and spending time away from school while a state of emergency was declared.
The Ministry of Defense in their submissions also outlined that they would also support the call for the rectification.
They have called for an amendment to be Arms and Ammunition’s Act, where a license would be issued for the possession and use of a firearm.
Over the years, many have shown interest to join the Fiji Military Forces however, receptionist must remain on recruiting only those over the age of 18, to protect children from become Child Soldiers.