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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Media, a factor contributing to aggravate child abuse – Minister Dullas Alahapperuma

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Mass Media and Information Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said the three main factors that help contribute to child abuse in the country are the education sector, the legal sector and the communication (media) sector.

Addressing a programme on children this morning, he said that the education system that does not educate children and the legal system that does not protect children and the breakdown of the communication process are among the three main factors contributing to child abuse.

Alahapperuma stressed that he, as the Mass Media and Information Minister has to be responsible for the breakdown in the communication process.

“The first accused is this country is education system.The education system that fails to educate the child on such abuse. Instead it conceals information,” he said, adding that attempts to provide necessary education are also disrupted by protests.

The next is the country’s legal system.The legal system is supposed to protect the child. The third as far as I can see is the country’s communication network. Hence, if there is one single person that needs to take the blame for the lapses in the communication sector at this point of time, it is none other than myself, the Media Minister Dullas Alahapperuma.”

He noted that UNICEF had identified 60 countries as those respecting the rights of children.“Out of these, 57 are Western countries while there were only three countries in whole of Asia, Japan, Singapore and South Korea. “Child abuse does not only mean sexual abuse, this also includes mental abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse and all forms of abuse.”

Hence, he accused three factors of being responsible for such abuse of children. Minister Alahapperuma also drew attention to issues that need to be addressed in the reporting on issues regarding children. The Minister said there are no ethics when reporting such incidents.

“We often claim that children are like flowers.Then we should also treat children as delicately as flowers when reporting on incidents involving children.”

Minister Alahapperuma said when reporting incidents regarding children, it must also reflect the general concerns towards children without aggravating the abuse they have already had to endure.

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