Director Interpol and International Relations, Fred Yiga speaks during the Interpol meeting on human trafficking. PHOTO: Godiver Asege
KAMPALA – The International Police together with the external labour recruiting agencies have joined efforts to fight the illegal exportation of labour.
This follows the increasing cases of human trafficking by various individuals, whom police claim are attached to licensed companies.
The director Interpol and International Relations, Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIGP), Fred Yiga said human trafficking remains a big problem, saying action needs to be taken to protect innocent Ugandans.
He said many unscrupulous individuals, continue to waylay unsuspecting Ugandans promising them employment abroad, but end up in the hands of wrong people.
“That is why we need this cooperation with all the labour exporting agencies. I am sure if we work together, it will easy to wipe out the wrong elements,” he noted.
Yiga was speaking during a meeting with all labour recruitment companies subscribing to the Uganda Association of External Recruitment Agencies (UAERA) at the Interpol offices in Kololo, Kampala.
He also warned the public against forged certificates of good conduct. He said due to the high demand of the certificate; some unscrupulous people have started forging them to defraud unsuspecting Ugandans who want to travel abroad for work, demanding a lot of money in the name of helping them to acquire them.
The certificate is a requirement for job seekers locally and internationally, visa application and international travel, work permits, those seeking dual citizenship, and exporting human labour among others.
Yoga asked people to always visit Interpol offices and acquire the certificate personally.
Problem of human trafficking
He attributed the increasing human trafficking cases to the briefcase labour exporting companies and heartless individuals, who take advantage of unsuspecting Ugandans who go to them seeking for external employment opportunities.
“They traverse different regions promising young ladies of all sorts of bounties they will receive when they are taken overseas. They promise them passports and certificates of good conduct for which they pay hefty sums of money. They then go and print fake certificates which they give to these girls,” he said.
Yiga said many girls have been arrested at the airport and different boarder points such as Lwakhakha, while others managed to escape.
He noted that unlike before, all the contracts are also assessed and verified by the ministry of gender and other agencies before approval.
“We also have a team which inspects together with labour attaches at various missions in the countries where we take our people for work,” he said.
According to UAERA, there are 120,000 Ugandans employed in the United Arab Emirates. Statistics from the Ministry of Gender show that all Ugandans working in the diaspora contribute $1.3bn with $600m from the Middle East.