Today, representatives from the Department of Social Development refused to give me a walk-through of the internal administration and data-capturing process of the Child Protection Register (CPR) at their national head office in Pretoria. I visited the Department’s offices in an attempt to ascertain what is causing the complete disarray of the register.
The Chief Director of Children at the Department of Social Development, Ms Margot Davies, informed me that I have to make an official appointment before officials will explain to me how the CPR is managed and updated. She has promised that her Directorate will get back to me with a suitable date and time for this appointment.
At a Social Protection and Community Development Cluster briefing in June, it was revealed that there is only one name on the Child Protection Register, despite earlier assurances by both the Minister and her department that the register was being managed effectively.
Today, I simply wanted to establish what is causing the chaos around the CPR and what process is followed within the department to ensure that the relevant names reach the register timeously.
I will contact Ms Davies every day until her directorate gets back to me with a time and date, so that we can get to the bottom of the disorderly and unsystematic CPR.
This register, if functioning efficiently, has the potential to protect thousands of children from being abused and to ensure that convicted sexual offenders are prevented from working in an environment where they have the opportunity to be in contact with children again. It is of paramount importance that this register starts working well.