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Title: Child trafficking on Lake Volta : lived experiences of rescued and non-trafficked children in the Volta region of Ghana
Author: Hamenoo , Emma Seyram
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2013
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Trafficking in Persons has been a punishable offence since the early years of the 20th Century. Although Trafficking in Persons is known to have affected many, including children, its definition and understanding has been a major challenge to its eradication. Given the pace set by the Palermo Protocol in defining Trafficking in Persons. nations like Ghana have enacted anti-trafficking laws (Human Trafficking Act, 2000) aimed at punishing Trafficking in Persons and providing for victims of trafficking. Despite the enactment of the anti-trafficking law in Ghana, many children are still trafficked on Lake Volta. To explore how the concept of child trafficking on Lake Volta is understood in Ghana, and how children rescued from trafficking on Lake Volta describe their pre-trafficking, trafficking and posttrafficking experiences. I carried out an empirical study in Ghana. In the study, the views of representatives of anti-trafficking agencies, which included government organizations, international Non-Governmental Organizations and local Non-Governmental Organizations, as well as parents and fishermen on Lake Volta, were solicited on what constitutes child trafficking. Also considered within the study is the process through which the Human Trafficking Act was enacted in 2005. For the views of children on their pre-trafficking, trafficking and post-trafficking experiences, both, rescued and non-trafficked children were interviewed for stories of their daily lived experiences. Using in-depth interviews for the adult participants and participatory methods such as glitoto and drawing for the children, data collected were analysed using both narrative and thematic methods. Analysis of findings reveal contradictions within the views of anti-trafficking agencies on what constitutes child trafficking, and who traffickers are - especially whether parents can be traffickers. These contradictions, in addition to the culture of child fostering, and the widely held notion of work being an effective means of training children to become responsible adults obfuscate the nature of child trafficking and stifle efforts to eradicate it on Lake Volta. The study also described the experiences of trafficked children, and such experiences are compared to those of a group of non-trafficked children. Analysis focused on the nature and range of exploitative practices to which the children have been and are subjected. Cycles of trafficking experiences are identified and it is argued that 'home' is not always the safest destination for rescued trafficked children. The thesis ends with reference to the work of Arrnatya Sen (1999) and Nussbaum (2000) who correctly argue that enshrining rights in law amounts to very little in the absence of structures that can empower human beings to develop to their full capacity.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available