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Church Urged to Fight Against Human Trafficking

By Tione Andsen,MANA

Malawi government through the Ministry of Homeland Security has urged Churches to use their structures to combat Trafficking in Person (TIP) in the country.

Senior Deputy Secretary in the Ministry, Patricia Liabuba made the remarks Saturday at Cross Roads Hotel in Lilongwe during a briefing of women from Faith Institutions on the situation of Human Trafficking especially women and Children in the country.

She said Churches are in a better position to complement government’s efforts to combating TIP by using the already existing structures.

Liabuba said Churches have an important role to play in curbing the malpractices hence the need for them to be aware on the current situation on the issue.

“We believe the partnership of churches and government in raising awareness on the dangers of human trafficking among Malawians can result into reduce cases being registered,” the Deputy Secretary pointed out.

She added that the 2015 TIP Act was enacted to facilitate ways and means of curbing human trafficking both nationally and internationally by involving all stakeholders.

Liabuba disclosed that the National Plan of Action for TIP 2017 to 2020 encourages the issue of prevention as one of its pillars to counter the malpractice.

“We are facing a challenge of looking after TIP survivors since the country has no enough temporary shelters to host them. We need to work with the Church and see how best the issues of shelters can be best handled,” she explained.

The Deputy Secretary thanked United Nations Office for Drug and Crime for supporting the Ministry to manage the use if TIP in the country and urged Women from various Faith Organizations to join hands to eradicate the malpractices.

UNODC National Project Officer, Maxwell Matewere revealed that survivors of TIP are subjected to harsh condition once they are rescued due to lack of proper holding shelters.

He said survivors need to be given proper holding shelters for them to feel secure and protected from the traffickers.

“They are usual in trauma and to be subjected to harsh conditions even complicates matters as a result some of them have committed suicide after being rescued,” Matewere added.

Chairperson of Gateway of Hope Malawi, Memory Chisenga said they have managed to raise resources and procure land for the construction of the first ever shelter in Lilongwe.

She said the shelter would be constructed to cater for age appropriate allocation for accommodation and provides special access to special needs.

“We need support to raise resources in cash and kind that include material donation to support the construction of the shelter in Lilongwe for the TIPs,” Chisenga appealed.

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