2 November 2017

Burundi: Children Under 15 Recruited to Cook for Fishermen in Rumonge

In Rumonge province, children under 15 years are recruited to cook for fishermen. They are hired to replace women who used to do the job. Activists demand the government to send those children back to school.

Children under 15 are recruited to cook for fishermen in Rumonge province. Some of them dropped out of school to search for a job and money. They cook for the fishermen and are paid fish that they sell and earn money. Besides, they are taught about fishing during the night.

This happens while women who used to cook for the fishermen were forced to stop the job by the administration because the fishermen's wives accused them of being the source of infidelity.

The organizations for the protection of children denounce child labour. They say the place of these children is at school not on the shores of the lake. "These children are not mature enough to work.

They have to go back to their homes and continue their studies," says Jacques Nshimirimana, President of FENADEB (National Federation of Associations Defending Children's Rights).

He suggested that the fishermen's association should search for other men to cook for them because neither those children nor those women commonly known as "wapishi: cooks" are the right people to cook for the fishermen. "The women who used to cook for them were accused of being their mistresses and this caused problems in families", says Nshimirimana.

FENADEB representative says they have already reported the situation to the administration and hope that the problem will be solved any time soon.

This recruitment of children has influenced school drop out in the neighbourhood as reported by associations defending children's rights.


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