Govt's bid to ban smacking draws fire

2012-08-28 09:30

Cape Town - Legislation that would make it a crime for parents to hit their children is again on the table and has drawn fire from political parties and civic organisations.

After causing a national outcry when put on the table in 2007, the issue is now back as part of amendments to the Children’s Act, reported Die Burger.

Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini said last week the amendments were coming.

She said the department intended to submit laws in the 2014/15 financial year that would govern corporal punishment by parents.

But the ACDP’s Reverend Kenneth Meshoe said it was short-sighted and irresponsible to deny parents the right to punish their children.

“Today we sit with 7-year-old boys who rape girls. The government with its uninformed policy directions is busy wiping out a whole generation of kids.

“It confuses discipline with abuse and will make criminals of parents.”

Existing laws can’t be enforced

Meanwhile, Patric Solomons, director of the children’s protection organisation Molo Songololo, said although the new proposals are to be welcomed, it would be difficult to enforce.

“If we cannot even enforce existing laws in schools, how can we enforce it in people’s homes?”

Democratic Alliance MP Mike Waters said it was parents’ prerogative to decide how to discipline their children. He said the government should not become involved before there was abuse.

Waters also cautioned the minister to rather focus on enforcing existing parts of the Children’s Act, like the register for the protection of children and appointing more social workers to apply the law.

“Apply the existing Children’s Act properly, rather than giving the Act even wider scope,” he said.


  • tian.reyneke - 2012-08-29 05:07


  • johleneh - 2012-08-29 07:22

    Of course, in a country with one of the highest number of orphan/abandoned/neglegted/abused children IN THE WORLD it must be a priority to focus on the discipline parent's enforce... seriously the heads of our ministers are so far up their own arses it would take a crane to pull it out!

  • damonsb - 2012-08-29 07:53

    The goverment doesn`t know how to run a country,whot do they know about children.

  • Hemlock - 2012-08-29 08:23

    The ANCYL is a perfect example of children who run wild and undisciplined........ Your point being ? You can't run a country, don't tell us how to bring up our children. You have no clue what you are talking about, so shut up!

  • 1jacquesnel - 2012-08-29 08:40

    It does not surprise me that Idiots sitting in a Parliament because the voters that's currently striking and killing police because they do not know how to resolve issues put them there, make laws that reflects their voters mentality.....

  • klaas.waarzegger.7 - 2012-08-29 09:01

    Oh! "Smacking", for a moment there I was worried that they wanted to ban smoking.

      johandebeer - 2012-08-29 15:51


      Ronell Mostert - 2013-08-19 23:03


  • attie.gerber.1 - 2012-08-29 11:08

    these idiots should get a smacking as they behave like kids

  • Sean.Nefdt - 2012-08-30 10:32

    Very thin line between discipline and abuse , leave the discipline and regulate abuse.

  • Louw Coetzee - 2013-08-19 23:57

    Sorry I don't normally get so fired up - but seriously? We "tapping"our kids on the bum is now serious law making responsibility of the corrupt. Sheeet! Why do they keep on making outcry worthy statements? It is to detract our attention from really serious issues. I will let the government install and pay myself for webcams in my house to make sure I don't "smack" my child on the very day that they eradicate corruption, nepotism, poor healthcare, poor education, unemployment, do i need to go on? Oh yes on that very same day I will also install a camera in my car to make sure I don't smoke while there is a minor in my vehicle. FFS - have any of these people heard of priorities? But that is what is being done - throw these minor things out to detract our attention from where they are messing up big time...

  • Tanya Bunger - 2013-08-20 12:47

    I thank my parents for hidings it taught me right from wrong I thank my headmaster for a caning! I never did it again! My children have thanked me for their hidings they had as it has taught them right from wrong and rounded them to responsible adults! Youth of today are out of control just like our government.

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