General News of Friday, 16 March 2018
Fourteen children reportedly sold into slavery have been rescued on the Volta Lake by an anti-trafficking task force.
They include two girls and 12 boys between the ages of 8 and 16, Myjoyonline.com has learnt.
The children were rescued from three communities along the Volta Lake namely Alhaji Akura, Kafaba Number 3 and Efutu after they were trafficked there to engaged in forced labour.
The operation was carried out by non-governmental organisation, Challenging Heights in collaboration with the Ghana Police Service, Ghana Navy, Department of Social Welfare, and international partners, Abolish Slavery Now.
It took the rescue team over a month for the operation to be pulled off, Myjoyonline.com has gathered.
The rescued children would go through a rehabilitation process in the Central Region after which they would be reunited with their families.
Challenging Heights has over the years been working with the Gender Ministry to draft policies and national advocacy campaigns aimed at putting an end to child trafficking in the country.
The organization, founded over a decade ago, has rolled out a five-year strategic plan aimed at supporting the government to address the issue of child trafficking.
Challenging Heights works in several communities across Ghana to rescue, rehabilitate and reintegrate children who have been affected by worst forms of child labour, including trafficking.
Working with its partners in 2017, the organisation was able to rescue at least 91 children made up of 74 boys and 17 girls, all from forced labour on the Volta Lake.
In total, the organization has so far rescued over 1,600 children since it was established in the year 2003.
In order to undertake more of such operations, Challenging Heights, James Kofi Annan has called for an effective collaboration with the government.
“We call on the government to take action, to address the problem of child trafficking in Ghana, and stop denying the existence of the problem,” he said.
He wants the government to invest the sum of GH?15million annually, to resource the Human Trafficking Secretariat, and the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit of the Ghana Police Service.
Mr Annan said the gesture will reposition the two institutions to carry out their work effectively and enforce the Human Trafficking Law 2005.”