HUMAN TRAFFICKING: Start by Knowing the Basics

Human Trafficking is fuelled by a number of factors, including Pornography and Prostitution. It has become the new pandemic.

Many do not know exactly what Human Trafficking is, as many mostly link it to abduction, children going missing or containers of people shipped across boarders. Although this is in fact a sad reality, Human Trafficking is, unfortunately, a lot wider and a lot more complexed.

This is not a comfortable, feel-good subject. However, this information can possibly prevent you, or a loved one, from falling victim to this ever-increasing crime.

So, what is Human Trafficking then? An easy definition is that: It takes place when a person is either tricked, forced, coerced or manipulated, into a situation, for the use of their body or for their labour. This is a simple overall definition. One can look up the PACOTIP Act (Prevention and Combatting of Trafficking in Persons Act) to find the definition in a lot more detail.

An important aspect to note is that transportation is not required for Human Trafficking to occur. I will go into this in more detail in my next article.

Here follows the different faces of Human Trafficking:

Sex Trafficking

Labour Trafficking

Domestic Servitude

Forced Marriage

Forced Begging

Organ Harvesting

Baby Harvesting

Child Soldiers

Forced Illegal Activities

Snuff Movies

Bacha Bazi (Boy Play)

Human Trafficking is the fastest growing organised crime in the world and the second largest organised crime in the world! One of the great contributors to this is the fact that it is a hidden crime and fear plays a big role. It is often over-shadowed by other crimes, such as the drug trade, Prostitution, theft, corruption, etc. Victims also do not easily ask for help, as their lives, or that of their loved ones, are threatened by the Traffickers. Some have their Identification Documents and Visas taken from them, and are then threatened with the authorities. Often children who have been Trafficked, do not always understand that what’s happening to them is not their fault and is actually illegal.

South Africa is a hub for Human Trafficking – it is a Source, Transit and Destination country. Many of the cases take place from rural to urban areas and some of the local contributors to Trafficking is as follows:

Porous borders; High unemployment; Muti; Ukuthwala/Forced Marriage; Zama Zamas (illegal miners); the Blessor-Blessee phenomenon; Child-led households/Absent parents; Technology; Pornography.

Remember that Traffickers exploit people’s vulnerabilities. This is exactly what Human Trafficking is – exploitation of vulnerability! Do not fall into a trap. Many of people’s dreams are also exploited, as this is another vulnerability that we all have.

I hope that I have made you think through some of the points I have mentioned.

Thank you for reading. Stay informed and equipped. Keep safe.


Leave a Comment

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