YONECO hosted a multi-stakeholder meeting on launching an Online Child Abuse Portal for Malawi which will open doors to confidential and anonymous reporting on online child imagery abuse.

In his remarks, the Executive Director for YONECO, MacBain Mkandawire, commended various stakeholders who attended a roundtable meeting for their positive input towards addressing the challenges that are there. He further thanked the Malawi Governement through the Ministry of Gender and Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority for providing the necessary guidance and policy direction.

“It has become clear that we have laws that protect children from cyberbullying but we are not fully utilizing them. Having this portal will further help all stakeholders to get involved in operationalizing such laws and protect children from online imagery abuse” said Mkandawire.

Speaking on behalf of the Principal Secretary for the Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare (MoGCDSW); Justin Hamela stated that the ministry is aware and concerned with the magnitude of online violence which is being perpetrated against children in Malawi.

“We the reporting portal as soon as yesterday and that the ministry would like to urge all partners involved to speed up the process of launching the portal,” said Hamela- Chief Gender Officer in the Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare.

The portal which is hosted by Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) will protect Malawian children from being abused online as well as protecting them from being exposed to inappropriate images on the internet.

International Development Manager for ITW, Jenny Thornton, expressed her satisfaction with the energy and fruitful discussions which partners had in the meeting and urged all partners to maintain the momentum.

Among other stakeholders, the meeting was attended by representatives from Unicef, World Vision International, Save the Children, CISE, TNM and Havoc Aids.

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