Uganda: External Recruitment Agencies Demand Police Crackdown On Traffickers


Kampala — The Uganda Association of External Recruitment Agencies (UAERA) has challenged police to swiftly crackdown human traffickers who they say have tainted their reputation.

Speaking at their second Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Thursday, more than 100 UAERA members said unscrupulous external job recruiters who have endangered lives of innocent girls and boys were soiling their legitimate work.

Mr Andrew Tumwine Kameraho, UAERA Chairman, said they were being doubted by people in Uganda and abroad because of heinous stories of girls who have been trafficked to Middle East and are living a disastrous life.

“Whenever stories of girls raped, mistreated or killed in Arab countries are published, our reputation becomes questionable. As UAERA we don’t have powers to arrest these traffickers but we have strong belief that police can do this job better. We request police and other security agencies to whip out these traffickers to save our reputation,” Mr Kameraho said.

A total of 177 human trafficking cases were registered in 2017, involving 335 victims/ survivors as compared to a total number of 125 registered cases in 2016 involving 283 people.

Mr Kameraho said there are over 120,000 Ugandans working abroad remitting $1.37b (Shs5.1trillion) annually, emphasising that the sector needs to be protected from conmen and selfish people.

“People are trafficked by organised groups. Some succeed but those who get problems paint a bad picture to all of us in the business. But those who pass through the right channels have well set modalities for their contracts and they safely return. We have system to monitor our people through online. For instance in Saudi Arabia, we have a labour attaché to ensure our people are well protected,” he said.

Mr Noah Mayambala, UAERA’s Secretary General, expressed worry on increasing number of conmen in recruitment sector cautioning the public to always do crosschecks before paying out their money. Asked on what they were doing to help police and government in the fight against traffickers and conmen, Mr Mayambala said they have tried to share information with relevant authorities whenever they get it.

“Trafficking is a criminal offence and we have no mandate to arrest. We share information. We have tried to alert police when we get information, that’s how far we can go,” Mr Mayambala said.

Mr Mayambala said their membership had increased from 58 during their first official AGM to 118 this year attributing the growth to external recruiters understanding the role of the association which among other things include sensitising the public, having one voice and making authorities appreciate the critical role they play in country’s development.

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Publish date : 2018-11-02 14:33:49

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