Human trafficking still a major threat: McLeod-Katjirua

30 Jul 2019 16:30pm
WINDHOEK, 30 JUL (NAMPA) – Despite the rising profile of trafficking in persons (TIP) in many parts of the world and the periodic efforts to raise awareness in Southern Africa, the region remains a fertile ground for traffickers.
This was said by Khomas Governor, Laura McLeod-Katjirua, in a speech read on her behalf here on Tuesday at the commemoration of World Day Against Trafficking In Persons held under the theme; ‘Human trafficking: Call to action’.
She said TIP is a major international matter, but poor documentation in Southern Africa masked the extent of this ‘modern day slavery’.
The governor said traffickers prey on the vulnerability created by factors such as conflict, poverty, unemployment, inequalities and general lack of opportunities, especially for women.
“These conditions force some women and girls to beg for survival, thereby exposing them to criminal syndicates of TIP. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that our communities are made aware of this hideous crime,” she said.
Meanwhile, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) Representative to Namibia, Djaffar Moussa-Elkadhum said despite efforts to combat TIP, there is still a need to reinforce individual and collective actions around prevention, protection and prosecution, to build a future which is crime-free.
“On this World Day Against Trafficking In Persons, let us reaffirm our commitment to stop criminals from ruthlessly exploiting people for profit and help victims rebuild their lives,” he said.
At the same event, Prosecutor General Martha Imalwa said two people have been successfully prosecuted and sentenced to eight and 35 years respectively, while a further six cases are awaiting trial before the courts.
Imalwa said there multiple officials trained on TIP and her office continues to lead multidisciplinary training on TIP.