The Commissioner of Police in Enugu State, CP Ahmed Ammani, has charged parents to take responsibility for their children’s upbringing to ensure that they do not take to delinquent behaviours.
Ammani said this on Wednesday in Enugu while addressing a cross section of parents on the need to join hands with the police and other constituted authorities in the state to check teenager delinquency.
The commissioner spoke on the sidelines of 18 teenagers (15 male and three female) that were caught doing cult initiations in one of the bushes in Enugu State at about 12 noon on March 12 by the Anti-Cult Squad of the Police Command.
He cautioned parents on the need to ensure that they were not caught in the web of the state law that states that parents would be held liable for any wrong doing by any child or ward under their care.
Ammani said that it baffles the officers in the command how children between the ages of 14 and 17 years find pleasure in belonging to cult groups or confraternity groups.
According to him, they were caught red handed with matchets, knives and other dangerous weapons as they entered the process of initiating themselves into cultism.
He said: “The astonishing revelation by these children led to the invitation of their parents to the Command.
“Parents should take parenting and character moulding of these children seriously and ensure they do not turn out to be a menace to the society.
“Presently, these teenagers will turn out within a few years to be great terrors to peace-loving people of the state, some turning to armed robbers, highway robbers, kidnappers and murderers.
The commissioner said that parents would sign undertaking to take good parental care of the children as well as make a periodic report on them as it concerns their change of character and being obedient at home.
Responding, one of the parents, Bishop Confidence Odumkemere, said that God Almighty had used the arrest of the the children to check the darkness within the lives of these children.
Odumkemere, who is with Faith Miracles Ministry International, Enugu, said that he would pray for the children and see how God would use them for his glory and better purpose in life.
“I will commend the commissioner of police for spearheading this fatherly initiative; and as parents, henceforth, we will take up our responsibility seriously,” he said.
Mr Nwanneka Okoroafor, another parent, said he had done a lot to put his boy caught in the negative act in the way of the Lord and for him to have little time for bad companions.
“I have ensured that he is kept busy through schooling and learning a trade after school hours each day. However, this boy is paying me back with this shame.
“I am assuring the police authority that I will keep an eye on him and ensure that every bit of his life is monitored,” Okoroafor said. (NAN)