Fiji Time: 8:41 PM on Monday 30 May

Fiji Times Logo

/ Front page / News

No child beggars

Nasik Swami
Tuesday, January 14, 2014

THE Social Welfare Ministry has declared zero-tolerance towards child begging in Fiji.

From now onwards, children found to be used by the parents to beg would be taken into State custody immediately.

The ministry has set up an interagency taskforce comprising the police and the Health and Local Government ministries to ensure children are not exploited by their families.

In an interview, Social Welfare permanent secretary Dr Josefa Koroivueta said families who used their children to beg for money would not be tolerated.

"Basically, if you're taking children to the streets to beg, it means you cannot look after them," he said.

"There is now zero tolerance on child begging. We have started to take children off the streets and place them in State care.

"We will not hesitate to do that again as we are serious about the care and protection of these children."

Dr Koroivueta said a recent ministry survey revealed there were about half a dozen children begging for money on Suva's streets.

"Children are very innocent and vulnerable. Some of the children are breastfeeding and some are below the age of two and have no knowledge of what's happening around them."

Dr Koroivueta said a profiling exercise revealed some beggars were dropped off in the morning to beg and picked up in the evening.

"It is sad to see that some of these are children and people living with disabilities who are used to gain public sympathy.

"These are stories which were not revealed in the past but when you go behind the scene you will be able to find out the real stories.

"We have all the facts about them, where they stay, the kind of houses they live in, the number of family members and even any medical conditions they are faced with."

Dr Koroivueta said the ministry also found that parents who use their children to beg were owners of rental facilities in towns and had tenants paying them rent.








Fiji Times Front Page Thumbnail

Kaila Front Page ThumbnailFiji Times & Kaila Frontpage PDF Downloads

Use the free Acrobat Reader to view.

Westpac
Code Inward TTs Outward TTs
CAD 0.61850.5995
JPY 52.991249.9912
GBP 0.32410.3161
EUR 0.42720.4152
NZD 0.71570.6827
AUD 0.66410.6391
USD 0.47700.4600

from

$0.00

Exchange Rate updated on 30th May 2016

Today's Most Read Stories

  1. Man found dead
  2. Time out for Jasa
  3. Woman dies in road accident
  4. Militant fighters killed
  5. TISI tussle
  6. Hearing for chiefly dispute
  7. 'Decrease in debt'
  8. Public servants step up fight
  9. Lots for tenants
  10. Watch on for truants

Top Stories this Week

  1. Tears of joy for Jerry's family Thursday (26 May)
  2. Son crushed to death, parents seek answers Tuesday (24 May)
  3. Ryan gutted Tuesday (24 May)
  4. Hayne, Ryan miss out Wednesday (25 May)
  5. Prophecy of Nasautoka Come and drink of this life-giving water Sunday (29 May)
  6. Remains of missionary receives a proper burial 200 years later Friday (27 May)
  7. Mother 'locks up' son to go clubbing Sunday (29 May)
  8. Families live in fear Friday (27 May)
  9. 7s fans disappointed Thursday (26 May)
  10. 13 for Rio Saturday (28 May)