Covid-19 response: UNODC supports national actors engaged in the fight against Trafficking in persons in Côte d'Ivoire

23-06-2020

Since the outbreak of COVID-19 in Cote d’Ivoire, the Government declared a State of Emergency, suspended all gatherings and installed a curfew by presidential decree to protect the population and stop the spread of the virus.

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted on the capacity of state authorities and non-governmental organizations to provide essential services to victims of trafficking, who are particularly exposed to contracting the virus, less equipped to prevent it, and have less access to healthcare. Essential operations to support victims of trafficking such as providing legal assistance and health care services have become a challenge, due to countries adjusting their priorities during the pandemic.

  
 Executive Secretary of the CNLTP, Ms. Virginie Yapo receiving PPE equipment 

In response to the negative impact of COVID19 pandemic on national efforts to combat trafficking in persons, and in particular to provide protection and assistance - including access to justice - to the victims of trafficking, UNODC, with the support of the government of the United States of America, delivered personal protective equipment to the national partners in Cote d’Ivoire engaged in the fight against trafficking in persons.

The beneficiaries include the Executive Secretariat of the CNLTP, the Unit for Combating Transnational Crime (UCT), the Directorate of Civil and Criminal Affairs of the Ministry of Justice, the Sub-Directorate of Combat against child labor, the World Brigade, the NGO Cavoequiva and the Association of Women Lawyers of Cote d'IvoireThe ceremony, which took place on June 23, 2020 in Abidjan, was chaired by Ms. Traoré Anita, Technical Advisor to the Minister of Solidarity, Poverty Alleviation and Social Cohesion, with the presence of the Technical Advisor to the Minister of Justice and Human Rights, focal point of the National Committee to Combat Trafficking in Persons (CNLTP).

Thanks to these donations, which include surgical masks, gloves, hand sanitiser and soap, the beneficiaries will be able to continue their activities to combat trafficking in persons and protect victims in a more secure and protective way.

The donation was received by the Executive Secretary of the CNLTP, Ms. Virginie Yapo, who then handed it over to the beneficiaries. In her opening remarks, Ms. Yapo greeted and thanked UNODC for its support. "The equipment offered by UNODC will further motivate all actors in their mission to combat trafficking in persons," she added.

  
 

Material handed over to the national stakeholders in Cote d’Ivoire:

  • 4 electronic infrared thermometers
  • 10,500 surgical masks
  • 500 hydroalcoholic gels with pouring spout (400 ml)
  • 400 liquid soaps with pouring spout (350 ml)
  • 4000 gloves
  • 280 soaps (240 ml)
  • 200 tissues
  • 750 garbage bags (100 L)
  • 60 hand wash buckets with tap

The spokesperson of the beneficiaries, Mr. Koffi Joachim, Technical Advisor to the Minister of Justice and Focal Point of the CNLTP, also thanked UNODC for the donations received and added: "We reiterate the commitment of all actors present to continue our efforts to provide assistance to the victims of trafficking and to dismantle the criminal networks that thrive from this practice which violates the human rights of men and women ”. He also promised to make good use of the donation received.

Personal protective equipment was handed over under the project Improving the criminal response to trafficking in persons through integrated actions in Côte d'Ivoire, implemented by UNODC since 2018 with the financial support of the government of the United States of America.