Rwanda re­ceives $1.36m to tackle hu­man traf­fick­ing

East African Business Week - - FRONT PAGE - By TRIPHOMUS MUYAGU

KI­GALI, RWANDA- RWANDA will in­ten­sify vig­i­lance in the on­slaught against hu­man traf­fick­ing, thanks to a new USD 1.36 mil­lion grant from USAID.

Hu­man traf­fick­ing ap­pears to be on the rise lately, putting lo­cal law en­force­ment on height­ened alert, es­pe­cially at the coun­try’s bor­ders and its Ki­gali In­ter­na­tional Air­port. Last week, a project man­age­ment agree­ment was signed be­tween USAID and the In­ter­na­tional Or­ga­niza-

tion for Mi­gra­tion (IOM), the im­ple­ment­ing agency, a press state­ment said. The two-year project will help im­prove knowl­edge, en­force­ment and co­or­di­na­tion in counter traf­fick­ing and pros­e­cu­tion of crim­i­nals be­hind the net­works. It will be im­ple­mented un­der Rwanda’s One UN frame­work, with Rwanda’s Min­istry of Gen­der and Fam­ily Pro­mo­tion, un­der­tak­ing com­pre­hen­sive re­search on traf­fick­ing trends in the coun­try. It is also ex­pected to strengthen ca­pac­ity of gov­ern­ment and civil so­ci­ety or­ga­ni­za­tions through train­ing, aware­ness and re­search to ef­fec­tively re­spond to cases of hu­man traf­fick­ing. Train­ing will be pro­vided to civil so­ci­ety or­ga­ni­za­tions and na­tional aca­demic part­ners to en­hance their aware­ness of hu­man traf­fick­ing is­sues and sup­port re­search on the same in the coun­try. Un­der the ar­range­ment, a na­tional ac­tion plan on trade of per­sons will be up­dated and law en­force­ment of­fi­cials trained with ad­vanced tech­niques on how to de­tect hu­man traf­fick­ing ac­tiv­i­ties, iden­tify and re­fer traf­ficked per­sons. Of­fi­cers will also be pro­vided with new and im­proved equip­ment to pros­e­cute per­pe­tra­tors. Rwan­dan Po­lice and Im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cials last week in­ter­cepted 12 Bu­run­dian na­tion­als, en­route to Saudi Ara­bia and Qatar through Rwanda un­der a sus­pected car­tel, os­ten­si­bly to be of­fered jobs. The vic­tims, 11 of them fe­male were in­ter­cepted at Akan­yaru bor­der­line on Jan­uary 10, along­side three sus­pected traf­fick­ers, among them a Bu­run­dian na­tional and two Kenyans. The trio was ar­rested promptly. Po­lice records show at least 30 Rwan­dan po­ten­tial vic­tims of hu­man traf­fick­ing were res­cued in 2015, ei­ther lo­cated in coun­tries where they were traf­ficked or in­ter­cepted be­fore cross­ing the Rwan­dan bor­ders, over the last two years. Twenty-three of the vic­tims were girls.

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