By Confidente Reporter
SEVERAL teenagers including two siblings were reportedly human trafficked from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in trucks in the past year and are currently housed at the Osire refugee camp, situated a few kilometres outside Otjiwarongo.
Home Affairs chief spokesperson, Salome Kambala said the teenagers aged between 15 and 16 years explained that they ran away from war ravaging their home country after the killing of their parents.
“We’ve had two incidents where few girls arrived in Namibia in trucks. They were hidden between goods transported from DRC in those trucks and were left on the streets upon arrival. This includes two siblings, a boy and a girl. When human trafficking involving especially girls, they risk being raped. Upon arrival, they are dumped on streets where they are forced to fend for themselves normally turning to prostitution,” Kambala said.
In a closely related matter on the prevention of child trafficking, Kambala exclusively told Confidente that 15 parents were sent back from the Namibia/Botswana border for travelling with minors without their valid identification documentations.
Botswana in October introduced strict new requirements for minors aged 18 years and below travelling through that country’s border to produce their birth certificates and passports to be allowed entry in a bid to curb human trafficking.
“So far we received 15 parents between October to date who were sent back from the Namibia/Botswana border for travelling with minors without their valid documents. Botswana implemented requirements so it’s best if parents adhere to these changes in order to proceed to their holiday destinations smoothly and to cut on extra costs of travelling to get the documents,” Kambala said. Kambala advised parents and guardians to, at all times, carry unabridged (full) birth certificates of children, in addition to the children’s passports.
“Adults travelling with children that are not their biological children should also be in possession of an affidavit (sworn statement deposed to before a commissioner of oaths) from the child’s parents where the child’s parents consent that the child may travel with a particular traveller. When a child is travelling with anyone other than his or her own parents, the traveller should have copies of the identity documents/ passport of the parents or legal guardians of the child,” Kambala urged. Kambala added that in the event one parent is not travelling with the child, the other parent’s affidavit consenting to the travel should be presented. However, an affidavit will not be required if the father’s name does not appear on the child’s birth certificate. “Where applicable, if one parent is dead, travellers should be in possession of a death certificate of the other parent of the child on the birth certificate.”
Kambala also said that Namibia will soon follow Botswana’s footsteps to eliminate child trafficking as part of the United Nations convention. “Namibia will soon implement such requirements because we share borders with other SADC countries that implemented this UN convention. Child trafficking is increasing and countries are complaining. Countries with harbours especially are being cautioned because children are trafficked through vessels and shipped across the world. These children are used as pets and slaves. The lucky ones are adopted although adoption processes are not followed.”
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015