Tag Archives: Human Trafficking

World Day Against Trafficking in Persons celebrated in Chirundu

By Charles Nonde, Public Information Assistant, UNIC Lusaka

Chirundu, is a town in the southern part of Zambia, bordering Zimbabwe and is a key transit

Arrival of Dr. Coumba Mar Gadio, Resident Coordinator, UN Zambia at Chirundu Market. Photo:Nonde/UNICLusaka/2019

point for travelers between the two countries. It is the site of two of the five major road or rail bridges across the Zambezi river, and the Chirundu Bridges.

It is against this background and its unique location as a border town where the 2019 World Day Against Trafficking in Persons took place on August 3, 2019.

Chirundu Council Secretary, John Mwanza welcomed the locals and visiting delegates to the commemoration and expressed his happiness that Chirundu district was chosen as the venue because it has experienced cases of human trafficking and it was important the community around Chirundu learnt what to look out for.

In attendance were the senior government officials from the Ministry of Home Affairs under the Immigration department, Zambia Police Service, the Host the District Commissioner and representatives from the Council, the UN Team led by the Resident Coordinator Dr. Coumba Mar Gadio that comprised the IOM Chief of Mission Marianne Lane and UN Office on Drugs and Crime Country Coordinator Sharon Lesa Nyambe. Others in attendance were staff from Save the Children and learners from two local primary schools, among others.

Delivering her remarks, Dr. Mar Gadio, said every year thousands of men, women and children become victim to human trafficking. Human trafficking, often also referred to as modern day slavery, violates the rights of millions of people across the globe and has far reaching consequences for the human security and state security.  She also highlighted that in the period between 2003 and 2016, 225,000 trafficking victims were detected, and unfortunately, there are many, many more hidden victims who need our help.

She highlighted that Zambia has not been spared from the scourge of human trafficking and

Arrival of the Marchers at Chirundu Market. Photo:Nonde/UNICLusaka/2019

the country continues to be designated as a source, transit and destination country for trafficking in persons. The 2019 United States Department of State Global Trafficking in Persons Report highlights that  most trafficking in Zambia  occurs within the country’s borders (internal human trafficking) and involves women, men and children from rural areas becoming exploited in cities in domestic servitude or forced labour in agriculture, textile production, mining, construction, small businesses and forced begging, among others.

In addition, as we continue to reflect on the theme for this year’s World Day against Trafficking in Persons, we must take the opportunity to partner with the government to ensure that we protect victims and their rights and hold perpetrators accountable.

Alfred Haamunjo, District Commissioner for Chirundu, who represented the Minister of Home Affairs Stephen Kampyongo, MP,  said in his remarks said that Zambia was now among the countries considered as low risk areas for trafficking. However, there was need for consented effort from government and its partners. He also highlighted that if left unchecked has the potential to threaten public safety and national security hence the need to curb the scourge.

He thanked the various stakeholders for the technical and financial support rendered for the implementation of various state programs aimed at combating the illegal vice.

During the community outreach events, the public were educated on the dangers of human trafficking, how they could potentially avoid it from taking place and what courses of actions one can take to report such illegal actives in their communities.

UN and UK Partner to Help Zambia fight Trafficking in Persons

By Dawn Heaps, Intern, UNIC Lusaka

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has launched a cooperation programme to support Zambia in the fight against trafficking in persons, with funding from the

High level representatives from the Government and the United Nations who attended the launch of the Trafficking in Persons programme launch. Photo Credit/UNIC/Lusaka/Dawn Heaps

British Government and UKAid.

Launching the intervention in Lusaka recently, Zambia’s Minister of Home Affairs Stephen Kampyongo underscored the severity of trafficking in persons. “This heinous crime of trafficking in persons leaves scars that are felt both by the trafficked individuals and the society from which they originate. If left unchecked, it has the potential to threaten public safety and national security,” he said.

Mr Kampyongo said that Zambia was committed to fighting Trafficking in persons, evidenced by several activities that include the country being among the first Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states to enact a stand-alone legislation on trafficking in persons which covers prosecution, protection and prevention. He added that Zambia had drafted two national plans of action to combat trafficking in persons.

Speaking at the same event UN Zambia Resident Coordinator Janet Rogan called for cooperation among all stakeholders in curbing human trafficking in Zambia, that had become not only a transit point but destination of victims of human trafficking.

And UNODC Regional Representative for Southern Africa, Zhuldyz Akisheva said that the new initiative offered an opportunity for increased focus protecting victims of human trafficking.

“Focus on victim protection is key in the global partnership against human trafficking and the smuggling of migrants. With the new programme, we have an opportunity to scale up and strengthen our work in Zambia to support a victim-centred approach in addressing human trafficking,” Akisheva said.

Echoing the urgency to act against human trafficking, British High Commissioner to Zambia, Fergus Cochrane-Dyet OBE, noted that the term “modern slavery” had been coined to describe the continuation of the disgraceful trade into modern times.

“This matters a lot because there is a significant Modern Slavery problem in Zambia….Trafficking occurs mostly within Zambia’s borders, with those from rural areas exploited in urban centres, in domestic servitude or sex trafficking, and in conditions of forced labour in sectors such as agriculture, textiles, and mining.

Part of the delegates who attended the launch. Photo Credit/UNIC/Lusaka/Dawn Heaps

According to the Global Modern Slavery Index, produced by the International Labour Organisation, International Organisation for Migration and Walk Free Foundation, in 2018 there were 9.24 million victims of modern slavery in Africa with Zambia accounting for 92,000.

The launch of the cooperation programme marked a milestone in the cooperation between UNODC and the Government of the Republic of Zambia. UNODC has been present in Zambia for the last 10 years, supporting the Zambia Correctional Service in HIV prevention and Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights in prison settings and prison reform to ensure that the use the Minimum Standards of treatment of offenders, commonly known as the Nelson Mandela Rules.