No sex please, we are only children

Khanyisile Nkosi

More than 300 children yesterday lashed out at the media - and more specifically music videos - for exposing them to what they termed "too much sex".

The children, from South Africa and abroad, were part of more than 1000 delegates who took part in the 5th World Summit on Media for Children at the Sandton Convention Centre.

The summit, which ends today, was hosted by the Children and Broadcasting Foundation for Africa in partnership with the SABC and the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa.

The summit gave delegates, including professionals and NGOs in the media, a platform to discuss and exchange ideas on the role of the media and its effect on children.

"It's mainly about how children want their voices to be heard," said Ursula Johnson, head of media and communications for the summit.

Under the theme "Health Awareness and HIV" the children, between the ages of 13 and 16, blamed the media for an increase in teenage pregnancy and for the spread of HIV-Aids among teenagers.

"No matter how much education we're getting, it's not going to help us if the media keeps exposing us to sex through music videos.

"At the moment the media is not doing enough to influence the teens of this world in positive ways," said one teenager.