Government on course in combating human trade – Gender Minister

Accra, Madam Otiko Afisa Djaba, the Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, has said government is on course in the fight against human trafficking in the country.

She said the government had put in place systems and structures to address the teaming issues on human trafficking in the country.

The Minister said this at a press conference in Accra following a Trafficking in Persons (TIP) 2017 Report released by the United States (US) Department.

The report indicated that Ghana remained weak in the fight against human trade, and thus, stood the risk of losing significant assistance from the United States.

She said Ghana was a blessed country and all needed to work to ensure that the lives of children were protected and their potentials harnessed to fight the menace of child labour and trafficking.

Madam Otiko said poverty had always been the underlining cause on getting children involved in child labour, a situation she emphasised must stop.

The Government continues to take appropriate steps and measures to improve upon the implementation of the Human Trafficking Act.

Not only because Ghana need to respond to the TIP Report but most importantly to protect the fundamental rights of Ghanaians especially our vulnerable women and children who fall prey to perpetrators of trafficking, she stated.

She assured that government would continue to put in extra efforts by engaging communities, chiefs, opinion leaders, stakeholders and parents across the country, on the dangers associated with human trade and irregular migration.

To win this battle against human and child trafficking, it will take concerted efforts from parents/guardians, chiefs and community leaders to dissuade their children from embarking on hazardous journeys in search of greener pastures, she stated.

The Minister indicated that the Ministry this year had validated and finalised the new Human Trafficking National Plan of Action (2017-2021) which was a comprehensive document to support the effective implementation of the Human Trafficking Act of 2005, Act 694.

Aside various interventions, she said, the government had budgeted for GH?1.5 million for the Human Trafficking Secretariat to support the fight against human trade.

Part of this money, she stated, would be used to renovate an adult shelter which had been allocated and a complimentary support to renovate the children shelter in Madina.

She therefore urged all parents to make sure their children got the best because they deserved it, as well as ensure that the home was a safe haven in the fight against human trafficking and child labour.

Every Ghanaian should be interested in this fight against human trafficking and report persons who are involved in debasing our humanity.

I believe that when we all put our resources together and commit every effort to this fight we will win.

Source: Ghana News Agency