Plans are far advanced for the construction accommodation facilities for victims of human-trafficking, the Women and Children Affairs Minister has said.

Accra and Kumasi have been selected to benefit from the first phase of the project.

Anti-human-trafficking have long pushed for the provision of shelter to protect victims of human trafficking, arguing the absence of such facilities forced campaigners to send victims back to the very environment from where they were abused and trafficked from exposing them to harm and further violation.

The Women and Children’s Affairs Minister, Mrs Juliana Azumah Mensah said the decision to put up the structures was the government’s response to the dire need to give impetus to the work of counter-trafficking agencies.

She was addressing participants of a four-day collaborative workshop for law enforcement agencies, the judiciary, prosecutors, government officials and non-governmental organizations on combating trafficking in persons and irregular migration in Ghana.

The workshop was sponsored by the Danish Embassy with support from the Women and Children Affairs Ministry and the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

Mrs Azumah Mensah expressed satisfaction that “information dissemination and awareness raising campaigns have yielded some positive results in view of the frequent [reports] about child migrants and the effects on the nation”.

She urged campaigners to continue to work assiduously towards rooting the canker out of the country.

The Chief of Mission of IOM, Dyane Epstein catalogued the achievements of the counter-trafficking project in the country.

She said “the first component of [the project] entailed carrying out an information campaign targeting potential migrants in the Western Region, which has been identified as a highly-endemic area for irregular migration, especially for stowaways. Under this component, a Migration Consultation Centre and a hot-line were established in Sekondi-Takoradi in the Western Region in order to provide potential migrants with information on procedures pertaining to the acquisition of authentic travel and identity documents, the risks and dangers associated with irregular migration, and potential opportunities for safe and legal migration.”