Islamic Centre Children Could Go Home

( [email protected] ) Jul 07, 2003 03:17 AM EDT

GOVERNMENT is considering taking the children being kept under inhuman conditions at an Islamic school in Lusaka back to their parents after investigations on the centre are completed.

Sports Youth and Child Development minister Gladys Nyirongo said this in Lusaka yesterday.

And Inter-African Network for Human Rights and Development (Afronet) has condemned the alleged abuse of the children at the Islamic school.

Afronet executive director Ngande Mwanajiti said in Lusaka yesterday that action was inhuman to the minors and demanded a thorough investigation into the saga

"The action to keep boys aged between four and 10 in a of warren cells at the school is a direct affront to children's rights as enshrined in the international convention on the rights of the child which Zambia is part to," he said.

Mr Mwanajiti said the convention clearly stated that children had the right to survival, to develop fully and to be protected from harmful influence, abuse and exploitation.

He urged Government to ensure that it prioritised the respect of people's human rights and not the dubious educational centres erected in the name of investing in the country.

"It should be remembered that children are neither the property of their parents nor are they helpless objects," he said.

Police on Thursday arrested two men for unlawful confinement of 280 boys at an Islamic centre located in Chaisa compound.

The men are expected to appear in court today.