The Day of the African Child (DAC) 2023 theme is titled “The Rights of the Child in the digital environment”. The African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (the Committee/ ACERWC), established under Articles 32 and 33 of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (the Charter/ ACRWC) selected this theme for the commemoration of the DAC in 2023.

Noting that the lives of children are mediated by the digital environment in ways that impact how they can enjoy their rights and how their rights may be improved or transgressed, it is clear that the effect of the digital environment on children needs to be considered in the context of rights set forth under the African Children’s Charter. The relevant rights include not only children’s rights to protection from all forms of violence but also their rights to participation and provision. In the absence of proper mechanisms of protection, children will be susceptible to greater risks of harm online. A child acting in the online environment is not different from a child offline, and children’s rights must be protected online. In that regard, ACR held different dialogues to commemorate the day of the African child.

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