Public Protector calls for protection of children's rights
24 Mar 2011
Public Protector Adv Thuli Madonsela on Thursday called on communities to report to her office any suspected disregard for children’s rights by organs of state.
She was speaking during the commemoration of Human Rights Month in Phokeng near Rustenburg. The event focused on the protection of children’s rights.
Addressing locals at the Phokeng Conference Centre, the Public Protector said the state had a responsibility to listen, account for its actions and rectify the problems promptly when people complain.
“I come into the picture when competent organs of state fail to give the public the assistance they ought to provide or when they carry out their functions in a manner that prejudices people or constitutes abuse of power,” she said.
The Public Protector added that her two-pronged approach to resolving complaints involved rectifying each specific wrong of the state while transforming the government systems to prevent recurrences.
The ultimate goal was to strengthen constitutional democracy by promoting good governance, adherence to human rights and respect for the rule of law, she said.
“This will help us realise our ideal of an accountable state that operates with the highest level of integrity while being responsive to the needs of all its people, including children,” the Public Protector explained.
She called on schools to not only help raise awareness about the existence of her office and its services but also to play a role on helping with the protection of children’s rights.
During the event, more 60 complaints relating to general service delivery at municipal level were registered for investigation.
While in Rustenburg, the Public Protector also paid a visit to the Tlhabane SOS Children’s Village, where she interacted with some of the home’s 80 children about their rights.
Issued by: Public Protector South Africa
24 Mar 2011
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