Sukulwenkosi Dube-Matutu, Online Reporter
CABINET has approved the Principles of Trafficking in Persons Amendment Bill which seeks to strengthen efforts to curb human trafficking.
Speaking during a post Cabinet briefing Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said the Bill will among other things provide for establishment of the criminal offence of trafficking in persons, in line with the Parlemo Protocol.
The Bill will also provide for the establishment of a secretariat to the Anti-Trafficking Inter Ministerial Committee and create an Anti-Trafficking in Persons Fund and determine the terms for its use.
“Cabinet considered and approved the Principles of the Trafficking in Persons (Amendment) Bill. The Bill seeks to strengthen the current legislation. The Bill’s objective is to achieve the following: to amend the definition of trafficking in persons; to highlight scenarios where victims of trafficking in persons may not be made liable to certain criminal offences; to elaborate on the assistance to be rendered to the victims of trafficking in persons; and to specify on the repatriation of victims of trafficking to and from Zimbabwe.
“The definition of the Bill will also include the definition of forced labour or service exploitation in relation to the crime of human trafficking, such as all forms of slavery or practice similar to slavery, sexual exploitation, prostitution, child and adult pornography, debt bondage, servitude, forced labour and services, child labour, unlawful removal of body organs, forced marriage, impregnation of female person against her will for the purpose of selling her child when the child is born,” she said.
Minister Mutsvangwa said other provisions of the Bill will cover the following: non-liability of victims of trafficking assistance to victims, access to information; repatriation of victims of trafficking to and from Zimbabwe recovery ad reflection period; procedure for the identification of victims of trafficking; circumstances for the granting of a Temporary and Permanent Residence Permit.
The Bill will further provide for the strengthening of the Anti-Trafficking Inter-Ministerial Committee (ATIMC) by providing for the committee’s liaison with appropriate Government agencies and other bodies in the investigation and presentation of traffickers, the protection and rehabilitation of victims and the prevention of trafficking in persons.
Article Source: The Chronicle