Govt res­cues 120 Zim women from Kuwait

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Pa­trick Chi­tumba Mid­lands Bu­reau Chief

THE Gov­ern­ment has res­cued about 120 Zim­bab­wean women from Kuwait where some had been turned into sex slaves.

Women’s Af­fairs, Gen­der and Com­mu­nity D e v e l o pme n t M in is­ter Cde Nyasha Chik­winya told The Chron­i­cle that since Pres­i­dent Mu­gabe tasked three Cabi­net min­is­ters to lead the process of repa­tri­at­ing Z imba bwe a n women still in the Arab emi­rate ear­lier this year, about 120 had been res­cued. “On a pos­i­tive note, my Gov­ern­ment has brought home about 120 Zim­bab­wean women from Kuwaiti cap­tiv­ity and we are still find­ing ways of end­ing this hu­man traf­fick­ing of our women to that coun­try,” she said. Cde Chik­winya en­cour­aged Zim­bab­weans to be happy with the lo­cal eco­nomic, po­lit­i­cal and so­cial con­di­tions say­ing they were more favourable com­pared to some coun­tries. “I urge all Zim­bab­weans to be com­fort­able here. As I am speak­ing, a lot of Zim­bab­weans are in bondage in Kuwait, they are be­ing treated like dogs or other use­less an­i­mals,” she said. “My min­istry is in the process of com­ing up with pro­grammes aimed at em­pow­er­ing women in the coun­try so that they re­main in their beloved coun­try. It is quite dis­heart­en­ing to hear that our chil­dren are be­ing treated like dogs in Kuwait, sleep­ing on top of roofs guard­ing other peo­ple while they sleep yet as a gov­ern­ment we have a lot of things to do for the up­keep of our chil­dren.” In March, Brenda Avril May, a sec­re­tary at the Kuwait Em­bassy in Harare, was ar­rested on al­le­ga­tions of fa­cil­i­tat­ing the pro­cess­ing of visas for the vic­tims who are now stuck in the emi­rate. Over the years, many Zim­bab­wean women have been lured to Kuwait on the pre­text of lu­cra­tive jobs, only to be forced into vir­tual slave labour and sex work. Kuwait has the fourth-high­est per capita in­come in the world and the sixth-largest oil re­serves, and its cur­rency — the di­nar — is the high­est val­ued cur­rency across the globe. Such sta­tis­tics en­tice thou­sands of Africans, es­pe­cially women, to move to that coun­try. In 2014, the Gov­ern­ment en­acted the Traf­fick­ing in Per­sons Act (Chap­ter 10:20) to do­mes­ti­cate the Pro­to­col to Pre­vent, Sup­press and Pun­ish Traf­fick­ing in Per­sons. —@pchi­tumba1

Min­is­ter Cde Nyasha Chik­winya

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