THE IMPACT OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLET ON THE NIGERIAN SOCIETY

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THE IMPACT OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT ON THE NIGERIAN SOCIETY 

BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

The concepts of child abuse and child neglect are forms of maltreatment on the child that impedes child survival, development, and participation. Children are seen as assets to parents and government because they are human resources that any society can boast of, therefore, parents and government invest in them in order to obtain better tomorrow. This can be achieved however if their early childhood socialization is devoid of harmful cultural practices that crippled their chances of survival, development, and participation. Ejikeme (1987) defines child abuse as a problem arising from the intention of an adult to carry out an act that is inimical or detrimental to the physical, intellectual, language, emotional, moral, and social development of a child; while child neglect which involves some degree of deprivation refers to an intentional failure of an adult to perform physical, cognitive, moral and social development of a child. However, it is imperative to note in this premise that what constitutes child maltreatment in one society may not be considered the same in another society, this is because of cultural differences a beliefs, practices. From the above, it will be important to trace the fact that there might be different factors that caused child abuse and neglect since the application of cultural ideology is not universal; that is, it changes across societies. However, different forms of child maltreatment exist like child trafficking, street begging, street hawking, child discrimination or child preference, early marriage, prostitution, child labor, use of virgin girl-child for ritual/sacrifice, etc. despite tangible evidence or empirical indicators of child abuse and neglect, it is difficult to measure. This is so because it is recognized as a major social problem that occurs in all levels of social class, race, religion, and ethnic groups. It is important to note that the practice of child abuse and neglect is supported by the government indirectly when the individual is seen as a product of society.

Poor socio-economic status of parents trace its roots through unemployment and destitution as the government does not address social inequality, unemployment, and poverty amongst its citizens, instead of people in position work towards actualizing their selfish ends, and those who cannot meet the society values

   

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