A bill has been presented that will establish a children’s commissioner in the Western Cape. This after calls for the appointment of a commissioner grew following the murder of 66 children in the province last year. In recent days, the Department of Basic Education in the Western Cape voiced their concerns about an increase of school learners being abducted in the province. A Grade 9 learner from a southern suburbs school was reportedly abducted and allegedly sexually assaulted while heading to school.
The commissioner for children will be mandated to provide an annual report to the provincial legislature outlining the measures taken by the provincial government to protect and promote the interests of children in the Western Cape.
The chairman of the Provincial Legislature’s Constitutional Committee‚ Daylin Mitchell‚ said public hearings on the Western Cape Commissioner for Children Bill would be held in in Beaufort West‚ George‚ Vredendal and Cape Town in October and November this year.
“The commissioner would assist in protecting and promoting the interests of children in areas including health services‚ education‚ welfare services‚ recreation‚ amenities and sport,” he stated.
Mitchell further noted that the public is invited to make written and oral submissions on the bill.
“The commissioner will have the power to monitor‚ investigate‚ research‚ educate‚ lobby‚ advice and report on children. They will also have to provide an annual report to the provincial parliament‚” Mitchell added.