President Cyril Ramaphosa has welcomed Wednesday's ruling by the Constitutional Court banning corporal punishment in the home. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency(ANA)

Parliament - President Cyril Ramaphosa has welcomed Wednesday's ruling by the Constitutional Court banning corporal punishment in the home.

Speaking in the National Assembly just hours after Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng delivered the ruling, Ramaphosa said while the focus remained largely on the abuse of children, beatings children received from parents and caregivers had become "a serious problem".

"This judgment will send a strong message that the beating of children will not be tolerated at all costs," he said.

The group Freedom of Religion South Africa had appealed a 2017 high court ruling declaring corporal punishment in the home illegal. The group claimed well-meaning parents would now face arrest for assault for disciplining their children.

In upholding the high court ruling, Mogoeng said  the defence of reasonable chastisement was inconsistent with the Constitution. 

African News Agency (ANA)