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Revival of Zimbabwe Economy Likely to Curb Human Trafficking

FILE: Members of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions hold banners advocating the scrapping of taxes on pension benefits in Harare, Sunday, May, 1, 2005, to celebrate International Workers Day.(AP Photo)

Employer and labor organizations today piled pressure on President Robert Mugabe’s government to address economic problems affecting the country in a bid to reduce cases of the trafficking of Zimbabwean workers.

Addressing a one-day conference on migration trends for domestic workers from Africa to the Arab states held in Harare today, Hapolang Phororo, who is the International Labor Organization country director for Zimbabwe and Namibia, said Zimbabwe should address its economic situation urgently in order to put a stop to the trafficking of its workforce.

Phororo’s remarks come at a time when an estimated 200 women were reportedly trafficked to Kuwait on the guise of being offered lucrative employment. Some of them were allegedly abused by their employers.

Employers Confederation of Zimbabwe executive director, John Mufukare, echoed Phororo’s sentiments, adding that workers end up going to some nations where they are abused by employers as a result of the harsh economic situation in the country.

A representative of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions, Jokoniah Mahoba, said many Zimbabwean workers were going abroad in search of greener pastures as a result of the country’s under-performing economy.

He added that economies of countries affected by brain drain usually get weaker every day if authorities do not find ways of addressing the economic plunge.

Permanent secretary in the Labor Ministry, Ngoni Masoka, said authorities were doing all they can to ensure that the country’s economy gets back on track.

Masoka also told Studio 7 that 13 Zimbabwean women arrived in the country today following their repatriation from Kuwait where they went in search of work as domestic workers but were later abused. This brings the number of Zimbabwean women repatriated from Kuwait to 102 this year alone.

The meeting was attended by delegates from government, ILO, ZCTU, EMCOZ, International Organization for Migration and others.

Report on Human Trafficking Filed By Thomas Chiripasi
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