Children's Rights in the Administration of Justice

Thumbnail Image
Kaunjika, Moses
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
The paper examines children's rights in the Administration of Justice. Children all over the world have been abused in one way The paper examines Children's Rights in the or another. Often times their human rights have been trampled upon by adults. Most of the abuse that goes is either hidden or it's never punished by the judiciary or the executive wings of the government. But what happens if a child has committed a crime or is subject to various civil abuses. Does the domestic law or the international human rights instruments offer any help? How effective are the domestic laws in enhancing children's right in the administration of Justice? The paper will briefly look the Zambian Legislation that touches on children. These include the Juvenile Act, Penal Code and many others. The paper examines the "Children's Rights in the Administration of Justice". It shows that the legal protection accorded by various international Human Rights instruments and also the various laws in Zambia that deals with children. In particular, the Penal Code, Criminal Procedure Code Zambia and the Juveniles Acts. Zambia has indeed ratified most of these Human Rights instruments but has not done enough in terms of actual protection of children's rights in practice through civil and criminal procedures. The paper consists of five chapters. The First chapter inter alia, considers the context and statement of the problem. The chapter also discusses the rationale for the research and submits that children need to be protected in the administration of justice as they are vulnerable. The justifications as well as the objectives of the research are also set out in this chapter. In addition, the chapter discuses the meaning of the term child and the age of majority. In addition, it also looks the CRC and its History .Lastly the age of criminal responsibility and liability of a child shall be considered. Chapter two deals with the criminal rights of a child starting the point of arrest and/or detention to the point of prosecution should there be need. It also emphasizes that detention should be the last resort and the need to treat a child as such except for felonies such as murder and aggravated robbery among others. Lastly should a child be deprived of liberty, what are the Childs rights? Chapter Three deals with the civil rights of a child in comparison to international instruments. These rights include compensation, consent when being adopted. It discusses these rights in relation to common principles of tort in particular, false imprisonment and negligence Chapter Four discusses the effects of children when they are victims or witnesses in court. It looks at sad examples of children who have suffered mental anguish and broke down in court. Specifically, South Africa shall be used as a case study. The effects of cross examination on children shall also be discussed. The point stressed is that though children are vulnerable, this didn't exempted them from giving evidence. The need for all judicial officers to protect them in court from the attacks and bulling of the prosecution and conclusions and defence counsel was emphasized. The Fifth and final chapter contains recommendations
Children's Rights - Zambia , Human Rights - Zambia