One of the country’s human rights activists who has dedicated his life to rescuing children from the streets, Godknows Maseko has called for international support and huge investment in the fight against human trafficking.
Maseko, founder and director of Step-Kids Awareness (STEKA) pointed out that human trafficking is currently affecting the country’s social and economic development, and needs to be fought at all fronts.
And in an interview with Nyasa Times , Godknows who was over the weekend featured in Tikhale Tcheru TV programme broadcasted on MBC-TV noted that Malawi is not performing impressively in the fight against human trafficking due to lack of capacity and funding.
“Issues of human trafficking are tricky in the sense that those involved have money; we therefore need to do a lot of home work on the issue because our laws are doing little to end the problem,” said Godknows, who was homeless during his own childhood.
He pointed out that the failure to end human trafficking is denting the country’s image as more men, women, and children are being trafficked every year.
“As a country we need to invest a lot. We also need support from international organizations. We need to build the capacity of our law-enforcers, improve the victim support system and train more psychotherapists to assist victims,” added Maseko who once was a victim of human trafficking.
Most Malawian trafficking victims are exploited internally, though Malawian victims of sex and labor trafficking have also been identified in South Africa, Zambia, Mozambique, Tanzania, and parts of Europe.
To a lesser extent, Malawi is a transit point for foreign victims and a destination country for men, women, and children from Zambia, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe subjected to conditions of forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation.
Speaking during the Tikhale Tcheru TV programme South Region police deputy Public Relations Officer, Beatrice Mikuwa called for community support if the country is to win the human trafficking battle.
“We have been receiving a lot of reports on human trafficking. We hold sensitization meetings through community policing, and we urge communities to report on such issues and warned from being fooled by tricksters.”
Human Trafficking is punishable by law under Section 269 of the Penal Code.
Tikhale Tcheru is a Malawi Police TV programme beamed on MBC-TV every Saturday noon and is repeated every Mondays. The programme is recorded and produced by Blantyre based media agency Elephant Media Productions. The programme’s current episodes are being sponsored by Malawi Gaming Board.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :