Many people dream about living in the United States of America. In order to make their dream come true they are ready to illegally cross the border at any cost.
Moving across an international border or staying within a state without the necessary documents or permits. According to Clandestino Research Project Irregular Migrants are defined as residents without any legal resident status in the country they are residing in, and those whose presence in the territory if detected may be subject to termination through an order to leave and/or an expulsion order because of their status.
Irregular immigrants are persons who cross an international border without the required valid documents, either un-inspected over land or sea, or over ports of entry.
( a) Staying after permission has expired and applications to stay have been refused i.e. that they have come to work,on a study visa or a visitor visa and continue to live after their visas have expired. (b) Entering the country illegally, by means of deception. (c)Refused asylum seekers are also classified as irregular migrants.
Constant and often large scale movement of people across remote and porous borders. Organised activities by people smugglers and human traffickers.
Lack of adequate resources available to Immigration and other border agencies. Extended land,riverine and maritime borders. Remote border posts often lacking reliable communication and road links. Corruption. Lack of travel documents. Bogus travel documentation.
Irregular migration often places vulnerable people in the hands of criminal syndicates running people smuggling and trafficking ventures. Hidden migrants are excluded from rights Inhuman living conditions. Brutal physical and emotional abuse. Dangerous workplace conditions. General lack of quality medical care Inadequate Nutrition
Some irregular migrants may commit criminal offences to survive.
Like almost no other form of migration,irregular migration sparks fear in the resident population of industrialized countries. Fear of increased competition on the labour market. Greater burdens on social systems. Soaring crime. General fear of eroding government control over national borders.
Trafficking: According to the Palermo Protocol Dec. 2000 Trafficking in persons shall mean, the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person,for the purpose of exploitation.
SMUGGLING:The accepted International definition is found in the protocol against the smuggling of immigrants by Land,Sea and Air, supplementing the UN Convection against Transnational Organized Crime. (a) smuggling of migrants shall mean the procurement,in order to obtain,directly or indirectly, a financial or other material benefit, of the illegal entry of a person into a state party of which the person is not a national or a permanent resident.
Human Trafficking is a process that consists of three stages :Recruitment,Transportation and Exploitation. RECRUITMENT Forcible recruitment- victims are forcibly taken. Fully deceptive recruitment- victims are lured by promises of employment or educational opportunities or financial gain and are fully deceived to the true intentions of the trafficker. Partially deceptive recruitment- victims may be aware that they are to be employed in a given activity but do not know under what conditions.
TRANSPORTATION Travel is by land,sea or air often accompanied and documents retained.Trafficking routes will always reflect one consistent factor ; victims will be routed where demand exists for their services,where the potential profit of their exploitation is highest. EXPLOITATION Traffickers transport their victims for the sole purpose of personal gain, often either to make large amounts of money from their exploitation or obtain free services or labour.
Physical imprisonment. Debt bondage. Removal of identity cards /passports and travel documentation. Threats of arrest,imprisonment and deportation Isolation Use of violence and fear.
Use of threats of reprisal against victims families. Use of vodoo and magic /juju rituals to frighten victims.
Family members. Friends Acquaintances. Criminal gangs or syndicates. International organized crime groups.
Both are irregular forms of migration. Involve recruitment and transportation through criminal networks or individuals. Opportunities abroad is the key factor.
In a study carried out by the Kenya Immigration Ministerial Research team in 2009 it was established that : Kenya is a source, transit and destination country for men,women and children trafficked for purposes of labour and sexual exploitation. Most of the victims trafficked were from Africa and Asia. Among the neighbouring countries Ethiopia had the highest number of people trafficked at 5.8%, Somalia 5.1%,and Tanzania 2.6%.
Other countries affected include Bangladesh, Pakistan, DRC Congo, Uganda, Guinea, Sudan and Senegal. Even though men and boys are also victims of trafficking, women, girls and children are more vulnerable to trafficking.
At the Kenyan coast sex tourism industry uses men and women of all ages including women as old as 45 years. The most prevalent age bracket for victims appeared to be between 13 to 30 years at the time of migration.
The Provinces that are economically poorer serve primarily as sources of victims of trafficking and so do those that have a close proximity to cities that are perceived to provide the “the better life” route. Most of the victims are from the rural areas where they are recruited from home and in market places.
The study also established that, majority of those trafficked are recruited through not very sophisticated networks involving personal and family networks. The traffickers are known and respected in the communities and are often rich people living in the cities, and hence it makes it easy for parents to give them their children in trust. It was further established that, there are more male traffickers than there are females.
Human trafficking is largely unknown in Kenya thus victims are transported publicly and at times in private vehicles. Victims are rarely kept or transported in large groups but mostly alone or with a few other girls. Some victims walk long distances to the destinations. Former victims were also singled out as recruiters and employment bureaus are also seen to be largely the centers for trafficking.
Trafficking in persons is a global phenomenon that affects many countries. Different definitions exist in different states making it difficult to compare data especially on cross border issues. Highly complex, difficult to document, has no easy answers Has existed for centuries and grown in scope.
Causes/reasons for trafficking in persons are diverse and involve both supply and demand factors. Involves both local and international networks and syndicates. Women and children are particularly vulnerable due to their social economic status.
In origin Countries they try to escape from poverty and economic distress. Conflicts violations of human rights. Swelling population of young workers in developing countries. Widening income gap between the rich and poor countries.
According to Prof. Hansugule centre for Human Rights University of Pretoria South Africa: War and conflict remain the main reasons behind migration. One of the studies came up with seven top reasons behind migration: 1. Desire to seek financially secured future. 2. In search of a high standard of living.
3.Seeking better educational opportunities. 4. Escaping from political fear. 5.Due to what sociologists call “start up series” a common syndrome whereby the first person to migrate invites friends and relatives that remained to join him in his newly founded home.
6. “Different persona” refers to individual differences between people some have no desire to migrate. Some people migrate to other countries because it is in their blood not to be in one place for the rest of their lives.
7 “Soul mate” : the term refers to love based migrations, marriage between two spouses from different countries,because it is usually to obtain citizenship based on marriage,this is a regular reason for migration. Some of this reasons contribute to irregular migration.
While there is poverty,famine,wars,weak and corrupt governments, chronic unemployment,natural disasters, racial, religious and political persecution people will always move. Where the Government is stable and there is abundance of opportunity and where you can be safe will always be an attractive destination.
The continuous flow of migrants in an irregular situation, their vulnerability to exploitation, and the association of irregular migration with smuggling and trafficking networks are persistent issues of global concern.