HRCSL embarks on migration & human trafficking border monitoring awareness rising

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HRCSL Staff and key stakeholders pose for photo after the meeting

By Yusufu S. Bangura

With support from United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and Irish Aid, the Human Rights Commission of Sierra Leone Directorate of Migration and human trafficking has embarked on border monitoring and awareness rising in Jendema on the Sierra Leone – Liberia border.

Augustine J. Zolen, Chiefdom Speaker, Sorogbema Chiefdom welcomed the team expressed his appreciation for the engagement, and stated that as traditional leaders they are the bearers of the naming and shaming that accompanied the act of human trafficking, particularly in border communities.

He said the engagement will help their community with knowledge to report to appropriate authorities’ incidents of trafficking.

During the monitoring exercise, the Chief Immigration Officer, Foday S. Momoh said migration and human trafficking are intertwined and therefore key to the protection and promotion of human rights.

He said movement across border communities always has rights concerns including human trafficking and smuggling.

He noted that so far, they have been having great collaboration with the security sector at the border.

Major Yusuf A. Kamara RSLAF explained how they have been active in providing security at major crossing areas. He however noted some challenges including the lack of rain guards and other equipment for effective patrolling along the border.

In his statement, Mohamed B. Kamara representing INTERPOL said He said this serves as a boost to their work and it will help educate the stakeholders and community people on issues around migration and human trafficking. He pleaded with participants to treat the engagement with utmost seriousness as he reminisced on past experiences where he said lack of knowledge has contributed to people being involved in the act of human trafficking and smuggling.

Residents thanked the Commission and pledged their support to work with the Commission on human rights issues around the border area.

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