Friday, May 5, 2017 9:31 am
South-East Professional Women Association of Nigeria and Diaspora (SEPWAND), has called on All Progressives Congress (APC) to prevail on state governments on its platform to relax child-adoption laws and procedures.
National President of the pressure group, Mrs Nwanganga Ibeh, made the call on Thursday in Abuja when she led members of the group on a visit to the National Chairman, of APC, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.
Ibeh spoke on the backdrop of the proliferation of illegal child-adoption centres in the South-East, saying that if the laws and procedures were made flexible, genuine couples could adopt children easily.
This, she said, would drastically reduce the operation of illegal adoption centres spread across the country.
She informed the APC chairman that the association recently met with the President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, on a similar lobby mission.
“We have watched how the South-East has been ridiculed by illegal child-adoption centres that recruit vulnerable girl-child to give birth to babies for sale to the highest bidders.
“We are working to find ways and means to bring the menace to an end. We were at the Senate recently to see the Senate President.
“We appealed that legislation concerning adoption should be looked into so that the National Assembly can make it simpler for genuine couples to adopt easily.
“We appeal to you to use your office to talk to APC governors to look into the adoption laws in their states,” she said, adding that it would make adoption easier and eliminate the illegal centres.
In response, Odogie-Oyegun assured the association of the party`s support.
He lauded the association for its effort to ameliorate the sufferings of affected persons and curb the menace of illegal adoption centres, which he linked to the country`s economic situation.
Odigie-Oyegun, decried the menace of “child depot” saying it was one of the ways of trafficking in humans locally and internationally.
“There is no reason why the country cannot run a proper adoption procedure such that those who genuinely need to adopt children be facilitated to legally do so.
“We know these practices have been made worse by our unusual economic circumstance resulting from almost two decades of running the economy aground.
“We as a party have now been saddled with the responsibility of patching up a very horrible situation that we did not create, “ he said.
The chairman added that the APC-led administration was doing everything possible to fix the economic base of the country.
He expressed happiness that the country had recorded tremendous investment on infrastructure, agriculture and other sectors of the economy.
According to him, in a few years, the country will be permanently on the path of growth.
Odigie-Oyegun said that the economy would be expanded with opportunity for employment at all levels, particularly at small and medium scale enterprises level. (NAN)