DAC 2023: LAI makes case for African children on safe digital environment, seek improved support from stakeholders

In commemoration of the International Day of the African Child 2023, Literacy Assured Initiative has on Friday made case for an improved digital environment for children in African.

Globally, the Day of the African Child’s, DAC celebration comes every June 16 of every year.

Speaking on the theme, Founder at Literacy Assured Initiative, Ahmed Adebowale disclosed that the first conference initiated by the Organization of Africa Unity (OAU), honoured those who participated in the Soweto uprising in June 1976, when students took to the street to protest discriminatory practices.

According to him, “As part of our efforts at LAI to commemorate the 2023 DAC, we organized webinar on the 2023 DAC theme and invited a season speaker, Mr. Olasupo, Founder BBYDI to dissect it.

“The virtual event is aimed at creating awareness for the situation of children including those in marginalized communities in Nigeria and across African and how stakeholders can support them.

“In his presentation, Mr. Olasupo Abideen noted that the African Child is well exposed to his or her digital environment compared to what it used to be in the past.

He spoke extensively on the digital environment, noting that the lives of the African child is mediated by the digital environment in both positive and negative ways. While many kids learn and gain knowledge through the Internet, some children have been negatively influenced by the things they consume on the Internet.

“The relevant rights include child’s protection from all forms of violence and in the absence of proper mechanisms of protection, children will be susceptible to greater risks of harm online such as cyberbulling, emotional blackmail.

“At the moment, we are living in a time of unprecedented technological advancement and a child acting in the online environment is not different from a child offline, and the same rights those children have offline must be protected online to avoid the risk of being exposed to indecent content.

“The prons of digital environment can also not be overemphasized as it encourages access to digital education via digital technology.

He called on government and other relevant stakeholders in education to priortize, as a matter of urgency, an integration of digital technology into education being exposed by children.

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