The Ebonyi Government has warned the public against the use of underage persons for contract work, especially as domestic maids and babysitters the state.
Mr Godwin Igwe, Head of Department, Child Development, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, gave the warning on Friday while addressing the case of a child who had been abused by her guardians.
Igwe condemned the incident which involved one Patience Nnamani, who had been abused by her mistress, Mrs Ngozi Ugwu, saying that it was bad to use underage persons for domestic labour.
He urged the public to desist from such act adding that henceforth anyone found to have been involved would be punished according to the law.
“Parents should always get the services of nannies instead of engaging underage persons for such work.
“The growing rate of child abuses and maltreatments is worrisome and if not checked, it might not go well with the state and nation.
“It had been observed that most issues brought to the ministry have to do with underage children living with people, who are not their biological parents,” Igwe said.
Mrs Beatrice Nwali, Social Welfare Officer, Child Rights, said the child, Patience Nnamani was brought to the ministry on Nov. 6, by a good Samaritan, who picked her by the road side.
“During the course of interview, the child revealed to us that a dog tore part of her aunty son’s shoe and out of anger she was beaten by her aunty.
“The girl told us that she ran away because the beating was too much and the aunty always say she will kill her and nothing will happen,” Nwali added.