The Minister for Justice, Johnston Busingye, has said Human trafficking is a serious issue that affects not only people in urban places but a threat to rural citizens and requires everybody’s efforts to be averted.
Busingye who is also the Attorney General made the call yesterday while addressing Gicumbi residents after the monthly Umuganda community service.
“Human trafficking is a global problem, the patterns that keep surfacing are no longer issues of towns and cities and urban places,” he said
“People who are trafficked start from places like this, very unsuspecting people who want to get good life somewhere, they are promised heaven on earth and they take you to another destination that you didn’t know once out of Rwanda”.
He urged people, especially the youth to be vigilant whenever they see people they suspect to be human traffickers and alert security organs or public institutions around them for the victims to be traced.
Although he did not reveal how many cases of human trafficking have been reported, the minister said no Rwandan should be trafficked.
“For us it is not about figures, it is that no human being should be trafficked,” he said
Fight drug abuse
The minister also urged the public to fight drug trafficking and drug users in general saying that the crime attracts a life sentence under the revised penal code.
Busingye added that Gicumbi district borders Uganda and there are a lot of cases of drugs being smuggled through the country which he insisted should stop.
“You therefore have two choices being imprisoned for life or stop the vice and live your life freely,” he said
According to figures from Rwanda National Police, at least 88 human trafficking and people smuggling victims were rescued since 2014 – 2017. The majority of them were girls and a number of traffickers were arrested.
Some of the victims were intercepted even before crossing our borders, according to police.
Last year in October, Police in Burera District intercepted and arrested a 20-year-old woman, who was trafficking four young girls aged between 11 and 15 years, to Uganda.
Statistics indicate that between 2009 and 2013 alone, RNP handled over 36 cases involving 153 victims in transit intercepted in Rwanda, including 51 Bangladeshis. Overall, 90 per cent of the victims are female, 82 per cent of them aged between 18 and 35.