B'ce Chamber backs amendment 'age consent' law
June 8, 2004
THE West Berbice Chamber of Industry and Commerce supports the Government's decision to amend the law to raise the age of sexual consent from 13 years.
So says Chamber secretary Pradeep Bachan.
In a statement yesterday, the Chamber said that at 13, the current age of sexual consent "is highly immoral and not acceptable in this modern society."
A GINA story yesterday said the Ministry of Labour, Human Services and Social Security is actively pursuing measures to have the age of consent in Guyana raised from 13 to 16 years.
Minister Bibi Shaddick said legislation is currently being drafted to this effect and will be tabled in the National Assembly soon.
She said "some" interest groups are challenging the legislation, believing it should remain at 13.
She did not identify the groups making the challenge.
The West Berbice Chamber of Industry and Commerce said it fully supports the government's move to raise the age of consent. It said the current law, which was enacted in 1893, is allowing for violation of the rights of the child.
"It is time that non-governmental organizations and the political parties commence immediately, in advocacy with the government, the process of having the Age of Sexual Consent law amended," the Chamber statement added.