Sex registers ‘is an insult to our children’

2014-08-22 00:00

THE Durban teacher at the centre of child pornography allegations spanning decades should have been on two government sex predator registers.

The National Register for sex offenders and the Child Protection Register should have displayed the teacher’s name, after his conviction for indecent assault in 1991.

A listing in either prohibits the offender from working in a field that relates directly to child care.

The teacher was found guilty of indecently assaulting a pupil at Hillcrest High School in the early nineties, but his crime only came to light over ten years later.

Democratic Alliance MP Mike Waters said both registers were poorly managed and that it constituted an abuse of children’s rights.

In a speech in Parliament on Wednesday, Waters explained the difference between the independent registers.

“The Sexual Offences Register is limited to sexual crimes against women and children, while the Child Protection Register is limited to children, including crimes of assault and even considers the identification of people found to be unfit to work with children,” he said.

He said that he had written to the South African Human Rights Commission and asked them to investigate the “dysfunctionality” of the Child Protection Register.

“The South African Human Rights Commission has found that by failing to adequately maintain and populate the Child Protection Register, the Department of ­Social Development is violating the rights of children in terms of section 28 of the Bill of Rights.”

“The Child Protection Register is in a worse state, given the fact that there were over 25 000 sexual offence crimes against minors reported in 2011/12 alone, there only being 488 names on the Child Protection Register. This is simply unacceptable; in fact it is an insult to our children,” he said.

• jeff.wicks@witness.co.za

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