YOUNG children below the age of 18 should not be engaged in any political campaigning because it’s a form of child abuse.
The warning came as the country is being hit by election fever resulting in political campaigning intensifying in parts of Honiara and the provinces.
Speaking to the Solomon Star yesterday Acting Director of Social Welfare Division Linda Tupe said engaging young children in political campaign is not the best way to teach young children.
“If children have the right to be protected from conflict, they also have a responsibility not to be bullied or harm others by involving in campaign movements.
“When children under the age of 18 got involved in these programs, it could be seen as child abuse and its not right for parents to encourage them to be part of these kind of activities, especially when it involves putting others down.”
Tupe added children under the age of 18 who are involved in this campaign period must stop.
“Because accidents might happen and harm them. Also they have no idea as to what they are cheering for.
“Parents it is your duty to protect your children and not to involve them in such activities that can cause hatred amongst candidates and supporters because we are getting closer towards the polling day.
“We can make our own choice of choosing the leaders but using and bribing children is just not right,” she warned.
In Honiara some of the candidates and supporters have involved children in their campaigns by cheering, chanting, shouting and waving placards and banners of their candidate, which was seen by some concerned citizens as a wrong way of raising children by teaching them on political dishonesty.
A concerned parent also voice out his outrage saying that parents’ role is not to influence their children in politics and is appealing to everybody to protect our children.
The country is a week away before the country goes into poll next Wednesday.
By ALFRED PAGEPITU