Govt to develop anti-child pornography strategy

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Pretoria - The Department of Home Affairs announced on Tuesday that it would be developing an inter-departmental protocol on the protection of children against child pornography.

The inter-departmental protocol will focus on advocacy and law enforcement on issues relating to child pornography.

"The increase of access to technology and mobile internet, with all its benefits, poses risks such as creation and distribution of child pornography, we need to be proactive in protecting children against this heinous crime," said Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba.

He said the lack of statistics about child pornography should not lead to complacency in protecting children.

The protocol will see the Departments of Basic Education, Social Development, Justice and Constitutional Development, the Police and the Communications and the National Prosecuting Authority working together.

This decision was taken at a meeting between the Deputy Minister of Basic Education, Enver Surty, Deputy Minister of Social Development Bathabile Dlamini and Mr Gigaba, where the Film and Publication Board made a presentation on their campaign against child pornography.

Mr Gigaba went on to say that he would be exploring an outright ban on pornography in the public media as is the practice in countries such as China and India.

"To this extent, I will approach the Law Reform Commission with a view to requesting them to investigate and advice on the possibility of such a move," he said.

In a bid to discourage child pornography in the public domain, the department last year launched a website to enable members of the public to report incidences of pornography. The website, www.fpbprochild.org.za, is available 24 hours, seven days a week.

The website is intended to alert internet service providers of criminal activities relating to child pornography or images of sexual abuse hosted on their servers through their infrastructure.

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