At least 179 Ugandans were rescued by the Uganda Police Force (UPF) in a suspected case of human trafficking to Nairobi.
According to a statement issued by UPF dated Wednesday, August 30, the victims were lured by a female recruiter who promised them jobs in Nairobi.
The suspect is believed to have convinced the youth aged 18 and above to contribute money to facilitate their travel. However, she harboured selfish interests in the disguise of drafting a travel itinerary.
Some victims were reported to have paid between Ksh20,000 and Ksh60,000 for the ‘lucrative’ opportunities.
A photo of the aerial view of Nairobi City
“Further investigation revealed that the victims were being lured into positions such as waiters, waitresses, supermarket attendants, and casual laborers at a company in Kenya,” the police stated.
Police rescued the victims who were being held at the recruiter’s house in Nampunge village, Kakiri sub-county.
According to UPF, the main suspect in the case was an 18-year-old, believed to have recruited the woman who was coordinating activities at the grassroots.
The teenager was said to be living with his sister in Nairobi, where he hatched his plot to lure energetic Ugandans to cross the border illegally.
The victims, 99 men, and 80 women were processed at Kakiri Police Station as police fast-tracked arrangements to facilitate their return to their respective homes.
“The primary suspect (in this case the woman) is in custody at Kakiri Police Station. Efforts are underway to arrest the second suspect (the 18-year-old) to help with investigations into the matter,” police reported.
Resident District Commissioner (RDC) of Wakiso District Mbabazi Justine told the press that such incidents were on the rise in Uganda, but the authorities were working to curb them.
“This suspect has a big group she is working with that’s why we see people from different districts and right now we need to investigate more to bring others who are still at large to books,” Mbabazi added.
A photo of Uganda’s Resident District Commissioner (RDC) of Wakiso District Mbabazi Justine