Times of Eswatini
DPM praises new child protection information system
MBABANE – Yesterday the Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Themba Masuku was all praises, as he launched the new Primero Child Protection and Information Management System (CPIMS) at Royal Villas, Ezulwini.
Speaking after being tutored by employees of the Social Welfare Department on how the newly-launched system operates, Masuku said this new development was necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which made it hard for the draconian filing system to be effective, as there were multiple lock downs which made it difficult for any entity to succeed in its mandate.
Launching the CPIMS, the DPM said he was humbled and pointed out that this development marked great strides towards digitalising the child protection system and gender-based violence (GBV) case management in the country. “As government, we proudly join hands with our development partners, UNICEF and the implementing partner, Bantfwana Initiative, who had made it possible through their tireless efforts,” Masuku said.
He noted that if it had not been the tireless efforts of the technical working group which mapped up, discussed, tested widely, consulted and referenced the Kingdom
of Eswatini’s Information, Communication and Technology policies, protocols and road maps, and the Department of Social Welfare’s Child Protection Case Management standards, operating procedures that align with the
Child Protection and Welfare Act of 2012, the launch would not have been a success.
He highlighted that the newly launched system, Primero is a working group that comprises specialists from the department
of Social Welfare, the Royal Science and Technology Park and partner, Bantfwana Initiative.
In his maiden speech, the DPM mentioned that the launch of the new CPIMS coincided with the celebration of the African child.
Masuku said that the Department of Social Welfare has a mandate to prevent and respond to all forms of violence against children and all humanity in general.
“The mandate includes partnering and coordinating other non-State actors preventing and responding to all forms of violence. All these efforts need to be sometimes aggregated and shared widely to inform policy and national response decisions. As government, we expect data to be managed centrally and to be readily accessible to tell a story of national efforts to prevent and respond to all forms of violence, be it by government or partners and I am reliably informed that it is all systems go in as far as CPIMS is concerned,” remarked Masuku.
The DPM then lauded UNICEF for helping his office to start this journey to improve the data management and reports on Child protection Case Management in Eswatini.
“I am reliably informed that beginning 2014,the department of Social Welfare, other Government ministries and departments including the Royal Eswatini Police Service (REPS) and relevant Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) set off developing a harmonised case management system and in the process created child protection tools and standard operating procedures, enabling the social workers strengthen child protection case management processes, from point of intake to service completion which helped bring best practices to the department of social welfare,’ elaborated Masuku.
Meanwhile he noted that through these partnerships, the department of social welfare workforce (social workers) was strengthened to handle and expedite child protection and GBV cases in line with the Children Protection and Welfare act (2012) and field practices.
He mentioned that this investment helped systematise the case management approach, enhance knowledge, coordination and networks/referrals to ensure early detection, and delivery of coordinated, comprehensive child protection case management.
With all praises he explained the standard of these operating procedures are informing and directing the child protection case management within the department of Social Welfare and partner NGOs in the country.