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Website to curb child pornography

by Edwin Tshivhidzo
on 03 Jun 2008
BuaNews Online
BuaNews Online

Members of the public will now be able to report incidents of child pornography online, after the Department of Home Affairs in partnership with non-governmental organisations launched the website on Monday.

According to the department, the website will be in operation from 1 July.

Launching the website, Home Affairs Deputy Minister Malusi Gigaba said collective efforts were needed to curb child pornography.

"We urge people to report cases of child pornography.

"People reporting such incidences will remain anonymous and information received will be sent to the police for further investigations and this will lead to the closure of the site and the arrest of the perpetrators," the minister said.

The Films and Publications Board would also play a vital role in ensuring that the perpetrators are brought to book.

Child pornography is defined as any image or description of a person who is under the age of 18 years or made to appear, look like or described as a person under that age, engaged in any form of sexual conduct.

Children are sexually brutalised, tortured and even murdered in the creation of child pornography.

In a bid to stop child pornography, Government responded by ensuring that there are legislative and other measures in place to give practical effect to the constitutional principle that, in all matters concerning the child, the best interests of the child are paramount.

Government has extended the scope of the Films and Publications Act to make the creation, production, distribution, possession, advocacy, advertising or promotion of child pornography a criminal offence, and has increased the maximum prison sentence for any person convicted of any child pornography offence to 10 years.

It has also initiated a national campaign to increase awareness among the public of this terrible crime against children.

It has also encouraged a partnership between government child protection agencies and civil society to maintain constant vigilance to ensure a healthy social and educational environment for all children.

Government has also introduced legislation to make the failure to report knowledge or suspicion of the commission of any child pornography offence a criminal offence. - BuaNews

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