Ghana has made strides towards eradicating child trafficking through the five-year Child Protection Compact (CPC) Partnership between the United United States of America (USA) and Ghana, the US Charge d’ Affaires, Mr Christopher l Lamora, has said.
He mentioned improved inter-agency cooperation, increased public awareness of the child trafficking as well as an increase in the number of investigations, prosecutions and convictions of recorded cases as evidence of the progress Ghana had made.
Mr Lamora, however, said more work had to be done to deal with some challenges hindering the acceleration of the achievement of the compact objectives.
He was speaking to journalists in Accra yesterday after a high-level closed-door consultative meeting with officials of the Ghana government.
The meeting was to review the progress towards meeting the objectives of the CPC partnership and it brought together stakeholders of the partnership.
Lamora said a report that assessed the performance of governments in 2017 ranked the performance of Ghana as Tier 2, which meant it was making significant progress.
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The Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Mr Ignatius Baffour Awuah, said government would do everything to protect the future of the country and would, therefore, invest in every child protection initiative.
“We are, therefore, committed to seeing the delivery of the objectives of the compact,” he said.
The Deputy Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Ms Gifty Twum-Ampofo, said the government demonstrated its commitment to the delivery of the CPC objectives by committing GH¢ 500,000 into the human trafficking fund to enhance the implementation of the partnership.
The Director of Public Prosecution at the Office of the Attorney General’s Department, Ms Yvonne Atakora-Oboubisa, admitted that Ghana had a robust legislative system in dealing with trafficking issues.
She said in 2017, 18 prosecutions and convictions in trafficking had been done, while a lot more were ongoing in the implementing regions.
The CPC Partnership is a child protection partnership agreement between USA and Ghana to help eliminate child trafficking and child labour in Ghana.
The five-year partnership started in 2015 and facilitates the award of up to $5 million in USA foreign assistance to Ghana.
It seeks to hold perpetrators of child sex and labour trafficking accountable under Ghanaian law, provide comprehensive services for child trafficking victims, and expand child trafficking prevention and awareness.
Under it, state actors in the combating of the crime, such as the Judiciary, have received capacity building.
is also seeing to the enhancement of the provision of shelters and other victim support services.