ECOWAS meeting on human trafficking hosted in Accra.

ECOWAS - Rapid News GH

In order to plan how to combat human trafficking, representatives of national focal institutions from ECOWAS member states have gathered in Accra.

In addition to other activities at the three-day summit, participants would evaluate the implementation of a plan of action that began in 2018 and finished in 2022.

The 15th annual review meeting of the ECOWAS Regional Network of National Focal Institutions against Trafficking in Persons.

The International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), on behalf of the EU, has been funding the meeting since 2014 as part of the “Support to Free Movement and Migration in West Africa” program. ECOWAS

The ECOWAS action plan pushes member nations to create operational ties between criminal justice system players and protection sector actors, as well as to come to an agreement on protocols that regulate the referral of victims across borders.

High numbers of both regular and unauthorized migrants have long been present in West Africa, creating a market for traffickers.

The topic of this year’s World Day against Trafficking in Persons, which will be held on July 30, 2023, is “Reach every victim of trafficking, leave no one behind” in an effort to raise awareness of the effects that trafficking has on victims and societies. ECOWAS


At the beginning of the meeting yesterday, Francisca Oteng Mensah, the deputy minister of gender, children, and social protection, stated that “no justification or account can erode the emotional, psychological, and physical trauma that victims of trafficking are left with.”

In order to lessen the vulnerabilities of such victims, she urged national institutions to prioritize the protection and survival of rescued human trafficking victims.

In order to handle cross-border victims of trafficking, the deputy minister pleaded with the participants to assist define unambiguous referral systems and paths.

According to the deputy minister, the nation is currently implementing its second phase of a national plan of action for the abolition of human trafficking (2022–2026).


The annual meeting is a major activity that helps the commission “know how well we are doing and where the problems might be,” according to Olatunde Olayemi, Head of ECOWAS’ Traffic in Persons Unit.

Young men are occasionally trafficked, imprisoned, or compelled to engage in computer fraud, according to reports of recent cases of male trafficking for forced labor.

He said that there was a sizable quantity of child trafficking for servitude and labor, including mining, as well as the exploitation of adult women for sexual purposes throughout the region.

Mr. Olayemi continued, mentioning, among other places, the Gulf States and Saudi Arabia, as well as trafficking in people from outside of West Africa through North and Central Africa on their way to the Mediterranean Sea and Europe.

Massimo Mina, the EU Delegation’s Head of Cooperation in Ghana, asserted that the region’s stakeholders’ combined efforts would go a long way toward creating a safer and more secure environment where justice reigned supreme and human dignity was upheld.

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