President Zuma’s Child Protection Week announcement on Wednesday that only about 400 names exist on the Child Protection Register has been criticised by Democratic Alliance MP Lindy Wilson‚ who says 43‚195 sexual offences were recorded in the 2014/2015 financial year.
Wilson said the failure to diligently populate this protection register is in flagrant contravention of national legislation.
The Child Protection Register was established in 2010 as part of the Children’s Act and requires that when a person is convicted in criminal proceedings for murder‚ attempted murder‚ rape‚ indecent assault‚ or assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm‚ they shall be disallowed from working with children.
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“At present a child goes missing in South Africa every five hours. It is a horrifying statistic‚ made worse by the fact that only 25% of missing children in this country are currently are ever found. Just this week in Limpopo‚ two five-year-old girls went missing and were found hanging in a tree‚ murdered. A nine-year-old boy went missing and was found a couple of days later‚ brutally murdered.
“An ill-equipped police force‚ with no basic resources‚ are unable to deal with these issues‚ let alone protect communities. Conviction rates on those arrested are alarmingly low in the courts‚ where cases like these take months and months to be dealt with.”
Wilson said the party would raise the issue in Parliament‚ and if not enough was done to improve the register‚ the SA would seek aid from the SA Human Rights Commission.