Bid to halt sexual abuse of youths
CHILD Protection Week has provided a platform for children to voice their concerns over the high level of sexual violence.
During the week Women, Children and People with Disabilities Minister Lulu Xingwana and the National Prosecuting Authority initiated a dialogue with children to discuss issues of abuse.
Some of the issues brought up included the abuse of young boys - as well as girls - and revealed that drug abuse was regarded as the root cause of sexual abuse and rape.
NGO Sonke Gender Justice's Itumeleng Komanyane said sexual violence affected boys the same way as girls.
"We deal with boys who are sexually abused and who also become fathers at a young age, and when girls have to deal with teenage pregnancy, so do boys.
"We need to be sensitive to both genders," Komanyane said.
"We live in an unfair society where people prey on innocent children.
"We are here to make a clear and unambiguous statement that the barbaric actions of child and women abusers have no place in a free and democratic society," Komanyane said.
A national council to advocate against gender- based violence, to be chaired by Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, will be launched in August. - firstname.lastname@example.org