Gambian youths are still vulnerable to human traffickers, according to the executive director of the National Agency Against Trafficking in Persons (NAATIP).

Ms Tulai Jawara-Ceesay said The Gambia is a source, transit point and destination for human traffickers who preyed on vulnerable people particularly the youth. Ms Jawara-Ceesay told law enforcement officers at a one-day workshop on human trafficking that they should be proactive in the fight against human trafficking in the country. 

“When we talk about trafficking in persons it comes in different forms … child labour, child sex tourism, removal of human organs, sexual exploitation, irregular migration (backway).

“The reason we call this workshop is to train law enforcement officers on trafficking in persons and its legal implications. And it’s also one of the recommendations on the US report for 2018, simply because they felt that the government of the Gambia is not complying with its minimum standards to eliminate trafficking in persons. 

“It was an unfortunate report; we may have our different opinions, but we have decided to take up on all the recommendations and work on them during the course of this year.”

Ms Jawara-Ceesay said NAATIP’s mandate is to combat cases of trafficking in persons and bring perpetrators to justice.

“Trafficking in persons is a global concern and it’s something that no one nation can fight. So, we are all part of a global effort to fight and eradicate the menace of modern-day slave trade,” she said.

A senior legal officer of the National Human Rights Commission of The Gambia, Mansour Jobe, said the training conducted by NAATIP for law enforcement officials was very important in the fight against human trafficking in the country.

“The agency is responsible to combat trafficking, but it needs the support of the law enforcement officers and that makes this training very important. The convention has three protocols under it and countries are encouraged to legislate on those protocols in order to be able to effectively combat trafficking in persons as well as irregular migration.

“Unfortunately, in the Gambia we are yet to have a smuggling of migrant law in the country and that is one of the requirements under the convention against transnational organized crime. It is hoped that the government of the Gambia will come up with a legislation as soon as possible because that will now supplement the efforts of the trafficking in persons act in order to be to effectively deal with the issues especially irregular migration.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *