Latest modern slavery fight updates -

Challenging Heights: Ghana’s Fishing Ban to Increase Child Trafficking

  • Published on
    July 19, 2018
  • News Source Image
  • Category:
    Child Slavery, Forced Labor, Human Trafficking, Law & Policy, Partner Spotlight, Prevention
Hero Banner

An anti-trafficking NGO in Ghana is warning that the government’s impending ban on fishing activities could result in severe child poverty along coastal areas, ultimately leading to an increase in child trafficking.

James Kofi Annan, the president of Freedom United’s partner organization, Challenging Heights, said that reducing fishing in coastal areas without government livelihood intervention would cause fishermen on the coasts to sell their children to fishermen on Lake Volta further inland.

There are already over 20,000 boys working in the fishing industry at Lake Volta according to ILO estimates from 2013. Nearly all of them were trafficked from Ghana’s coastal areas.

Myjoyonline reports that child trafficking may surge next month:

Available records show that more boys and girls are trafficked from the coast to the Lake Volta during the month of August, than any other month.

This season of trafficking has been due to the onset of the school vacation, when parents and guardians send their children out for labour exploitation, under the pretext of working to support them during the vacation.

Challenging Heights believes that banning fishing in the coastal regions of Ghana at this time of the year when there has not been prior sensitization, will, therefore, present fertile grounds for fishermen to be forced to send their children to the Lake Volta, for alternative fishing activities, in keeping with the history of the trafficking of children to the Lake Volta.

Dr. Annan added that the fishing ban would hit fishermen particularly hard as they would not be able to support their children’s education, leading to school dropouts.

“Our position is that the Ministry of Fisheries has taken a wrong decision, and this is about to create poverty among the coastal fisher folks in Ghana, and therefore we are calling for the suspension of the decision,” he added.


Freedom United is interested in hearing from our community and welcomes relevant, informed comments, advice, and insights that advance the conversation around our campaigns and advocacy. We value inclusivity and respect within our community. To be approved, your comments should be civil.

stop icon A few things we do not tolerate: comments that promote discrimination, prejudice, racism, or xenophobia, as well as personal attacks or profanity. We screen submissions in order to create a space where the entire Freedom United community feels safe to express and exchange thoughtful opinions.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

This week

The "Migration Pact" that could mean the end of human rights in the E.U.

After nearly a decade of deliberation, the European Parliament recently passed a sweeping overhaul of the European Union’s asylum and migration rules with what is known as the “Migration Pact” which advocates say will lead to an increase in human rights abuses, including extreme exploitation. According to Al Jazeera, prominent E.U. figures like German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and E.U. Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson believe these reforms

| Wednesday April 10, 2024

Read more