In most of Southern African countries facing social, economic and unemployment problems, women and children are approached by individuals with offers of jobs or scholarships in another neighbour country, to which they usually cross by illegal means.
Once in the destination country, these women or children, after being told that they owe a certain amount of money to the recruiters, are forced into prostitution or other dangerous activities in order to pay back the money. In some cases they can be sold to others as “wives” or as sex slaves and domestic workers with no remuneration.
They may also end up as cheap labour on farms or in the construction industry, or other forced and slavery labour, often confronted with blackmail abuses, given their illegal situation in the destination countries. Studies reveal also that most of these children and young women are likely to be denounced as illegal, ending up as criminals, put as guests in transition centers under police custody, from where they are forcedly deported to their countries, in extreme inhuman conditions.
It is also important to emphasize that the studies on trafficking in Mozambique, Zambia and South Africa agree that some Southern Africa countries serve as transition points of victims trafficked in Europe to other continents. Southern Africa is also regarded as origin zone for adolescents and youngsters trafficked to the European continent. South Africa neighbours countries are appointed as a transition country of victims recruited in the centre and the corner of Africa, with this country as a destination.
Studies carried out in the Southern Africa Region on human trafficking point out that thousands of women and children are trafficked across international borders, every year.