Deputy Minister of Social Development Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu has called on people to open cases of legal rape against those who sleep with and fertilize underage girls.
She spoke during the launch of Child Protection Week in Lusikisiki in the Eastern Cape.
This year, the focus will be on teenage pregnancy, which saw a peak during COVID-19 in 2021.
National Child Protection Week is held annually in South Africa to raise awareness of children’s rights as enshrined in the 2005 Children’s Act.
The small rural town of Lusikisiki has been identified as one of the hotspots for teenage pregnancy, with 671 cases reported over the last two years of girls between the ages of 10 to 14 getting pregnant.
Bogopane-Zulu says communities need to play an active role in protecting children.
“We are reluctant both as government and NPOs, community and traditional leaders to open legal rape cases, even though the law says if a child has sex under 16, that is legal rape. For some strange reason we find it “It’s time to get serious about protecting children.”
Meanwhile, social organization Women and Men Against Child Abuse says as the week of child protection begins, the government’s strategy should become more including to help abused children.
South Africa has high rates of abuse of women and children compared to many other countries.
The spokesperson for the organization Ngaa Murombedzi said it was shocking that a pregnant ten-year-old was being classified as a teenager.
Ngaa Murombedzi shares more in the interview below:
– Additional reporting by SABC News
Social development calls on people to open charges against child rapists – SABC News
Source link Social development calls on people to open charges against child rapists – SABC News