The United Nations children’s fund (UNICEF) on Friday condemned the kidnapping and murder of children in Kenya and called for the arrest of those responsible.
UNICEF Representative to Kenya Maniza Zaman urged the government to provide additional measures to protect children wherever they are, saying kidnapping and killing of children are the worst crimes imaginable.
“As well as holding the perpetrators to account, we need to redouble our efforts to ensure that children are protected wherever they are – at home, in schools and in public spaces,” Zaman said in a statement issued in Nairobi.
The UN children’s fund said no child should ever go through the traumatic experience of being a victim of violence and abuse.
“We need psychosocial support for child victims and their families, and we need to ensure that the public is vigilant and knows how to recognize and report any kind of violence against children,” she added.
The statement comes amid an upsurge of abductions and killings of children across the country, especially in Nairobi.
The cases of missing children have caused great concern among parents in Nairobi, with photos of children who have disappeared being posted on local media.
On Thursday, a Kenyan court ordered the detention for 30 days of suspected serial child killer Masten Wanjala, who was accused of killing 12 children, to allow a police probe.
The Ministry of Labor and Social Protection, with UNICEF support, last year launched a five-year National Prevention and Response Plan on Violence against Children in response to persistently high rates of violence against children in Kenya.
This includes a public information campaign “Spot It, Stop It,” encouraging children and adults to speak up about violence, seek support from a trusted adult, a children officer, or the toll-free 116 Child Helpline, and report cases to the police. Enditem