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Cablegate: Zanzibar's Work On Tip Laudable; Hungry for More


DE RUEHDR #1464/01 2411132
P 291132Z AUG 06





E.O. 12958: N/A

1. (U) SUMMARY: Zanzibar has taken the subject of
trafficking in persons (TIP) to heart. Immigration officials
have trained their own officers as well as local
administrators and identified the need to review the
legislation on TIP. Prosecutors, journalists, politicians,
tourism officials, and police all recognize TIP patterns on
the islands of Unguja and Pemba and would welcome U.S.
assistance to further train police, prosecutors and tourism

Immigration leading the way
2. (U) The Immigration officials who participated in the
IOM-led workshop on TIP in Bagamoyo in November 2005 brought
the information back to Zanzibar, raising awareness within
the Immigration Department and throughout the community.
Immigration trained 170 (140 on Unguja and 30 on Pemba) of
the 248 immigration officers on Zanzibar and has taken the
training to the village level by training local
administrators known as ward secretaries or "Shehas." Shehas
are contacted by individuals who need proof of birth,
residency or citizenship for passport issuance or other
official matters. Zanzibar's identification card system
began in 2005 and is not yet complete, so many Zanzibaris do
not have proof of identity, birth, residence or citizenship.
To obtain a passport or other documents, individuals contact
the local Sheha who may issue a letter to the Department of
Immigration recommending the issuance of a passport. This
document is required in order for Immigration to consider an
individual's application for a passport. The Immigration
Department trained 211 Shehas on Unguja (all but a few who
were ill on the day of the training) and plans a training for
the 101 Shehas on Pemba at the end of August. Officials said
the one-day training was the first time that many Shehas
learned of human trafficking, how to identify it and how to
assist victims.

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Investigation and prosecution
3. (U) TIP cases are investigated by the Criminal
Investigations Division (100 officers) of the police and
prosecuted by the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), not
by police prosecutors as was the case until 2003. The DPP is
responsible for prosecuting all criminal cases, but a 2005
law allows the DPP's office to delegate that authority to
other institutions for categories of crimes. For example,
the DPP delegated to the Immigration Department the authority
to prosecute immigration cases involving cross-border crimes
or entering or working illegally. Most TIP crimes fall under
the prosecutorial purview of the DPP. A case takes an
average of six to seven months from the time it is brought to
the DPP to the time a decision is rendered. Prosecutor
Mohammed Kiobya told Poloff August 21 that prosecutors have
not yet received TIP training and suggested this may explain
the lack of cases prosecuted.

4. (U) Although officials have not made arrests or
prosecuted cases regarding TIP, officials investigated cases
suspected to be trafficking. Immigration officials keep
records, including statements, photos and biodata, and have
refused to issue travel documents for some individuals with
suspicious application materials or circumstances.
Immigration hopes to move these records to a computerized
system in the near future. Police Inspector Ali Hamad Said,
in charge of the police station at Kiongwe in the tourist
belt of northern Unguja, told Poloff August 14 that officers
at his station investigated "three to five" claims of
trafficking so far in 2006 and concluded one was TIP while
the others were not. (The one case of TIP is described in
paragraph 8.)

More help wanted
5. (U) Assistant Commissioner of Police K.K. Kheir wants
TIP training for police officers, beginning with a group of
key officers and then to include the training at the police
college in Zanzibar. When Poloff told Kheir of the upcoming
training by the Department of Justice in Dar es Salaam,
Iringa and Mwanza, Kheir told Poloff "please include us; we
need it" and asked that general duty officers be trained.
Kheir fears history is repeating itself, with Zanzibar
serving as a transit point as it did for the slave market in
the 19th century. Police Inspector Said recommended training
for police, immigration and prosecutors.

6. (U) TIP is addressed in separate legislation on the
mainland and on Zanzibar. Immigration officials recognize
the shortcomings of Zanzibar's current TIP law and would
welcome assistance to reform section 172 of Penal Act No. 6
of 2004 in order to meet international standards.

Immigration officials suggested that the Chief Minister's
office, in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour, Women
and Children, should take the lead in reviewing legislation.
Prosecutor Mohammed Kiobya admitted the legal definition of
TIP may need some amendment but said the real problem is the
lack of training for police and prosecutors. Immigration
officials also requested practical training on how to collect
evidence of TIP crimes. The Zanzibar Tourism Commission
would welcome training for its five regional tourism officers
and 14 tourism patrolling officers which liaise with other
government authorities to enhance security.

7. (U) The Zanzibar Tourist Commission identified the main
pull factor for TIP on Zanzibar as business owners looking
for cheap labour in order to increase profits. Journalist
Ali Shehele said girls from Iringa (mainland) and Pemba come
to Unguja to work as housemaids, while individuals from Tanga
(mainland) generally come to Zanzibar to work in
construction, tailoring and hotels. Travel to Unguja is
predominantly by ferry.

8. (U) Police Inspector Said, in charge of the police
station at Kiongwe in the tourist belt of northern Unguja,
identified one case of TIP. Regina, a woman who owns a bar
on Zanzibar, asked a man in Dar es Salaam to find two women
to work in her bar. The man, Chande, recruited two women
under 20 years old in Dar es Salaam in June 2006 by offering
them jobs in a hotel for "a good salary." He arranged for
the women's transportation by ferry and Regina met them in
Zanzibar. They worked in her bar for 15,000 shillings per
month (approximately USD 12), but were unhappy with the
arrangement and villagers directed them to the police. Said
spoke with the bar owner who said she did not know what the
man had said to the girls and that if they returned to Dar,
she wanted to be repaid the cost of their transport. After
further discussion with Said, the owner agreed to forego the
cost of transportation to Zanzibar and agreed to pay for part
of the women's transport back to Dar. Said negotiated a
reduced transport fee with the owner of a boat and paid the
other part of their transport costs. The women called Said
when back in Dar to let him know they had arrived safely.
The case is not being prosecuted due to not knowing the
location of the recruiter in Dar and the witnesses not
willing to stay in Zanzibar for the duration of the case.

9. (U) Tourism officials observe individuals from Uganda,
Rwanda, Kenya and the mainland come to Zanzibar as a "greener
pasture" as there is a small number of skilled labourers on
Zanzibar and demand outweighs the supply. Prior to the
Zanzibar Commission for Tourism implementing changes to the
training system in 2003, training for hospitality industry
jobs on Zanzibar was used in a TIP scheme. In 2000, 13 women
from Songea were recruited to come to Zanzibar. They took a
bus to Dar and a ferry from Dar to Zanzibar where they were
met and taken to Bububu, north of Stone Town. There they
were kept in one room and given three meals a day, then two,
then one, presumably as the traffickers' funds ran low. They
came to the office of the Commission and gave officials there
"quite a shock." The Commission responded by introducing a
registration process and training levy in order to monitor
individuals coming from the mainland to Zanzibar for hotel
training. Since 2003, trainees must register with the
Commission, state with which hotel they are training and pay
a USD 50 fee. The Commission contacts the hotel and verifies
the length of training. Hotels can have a maximum of 15
trainees at one time and are reticent to accept trainees
without the Commission's permission.

10. (U) Immigration officers said there have been a few
cases of trafficking victims returning to Zanzibar from the
Middle East, including the United Arab Emirates. Politician
Naila Jaddawi knew of victims who had returned from Oman and
Dubai. Shehele said young girls are shown photos of
handsome, successful men in Arabia that are looking for
housemaids and that Zanzibaris travel to Oman through
arrangements made by relatives, while residents of the
mainland have travel arranged by agents. Victims who
traveled by arrangement of relatives found it particularly
difficult to refuse to engage in the work arranged, to refuse
to accept the payment offered, or to leave.

Planes, ferries and bars -- keeping up appearances
--------------------------------------------- -----
11. (U) Passengers arriving or departing on domestic
flights at Zanzibar airport are not checked by immigration
officials, although officials have the authority to do so if
they suspect something is wrong. Similarly, residents
arriving by ferry are not checked, but officials agreed that

it is difficult to discern which passengers are Zanzibari.
It is left to the individual officer's judgment based on the
passenger's physical appearance and officials admitted that
residents of the mainland and of other African countries
routinely enter Zanzibar without an immigration check because
of this practice. Immigration officials said this is "a
matter of practice and procedure" and did not know what level
of government could change the practice. They added that
"years ago" immigration officials checked all passengers but
under President Mwinyi (President of Zanzibar 1984-85), this
practice was found to violate the Constitution and the
guarantee of freedom of movement and the legislature endorsed
this finding.

12. (U) Immigration and tourism officials agreed that the
lack of immigration checks for domestic flights and for ferry
passengers means that no one knows exactly who is on
Zanzibar. Both groups said they would prefer to monitor
entry more closely and identified a need for more security
and patrols of entry points. For tourism officials, this is
a loophole for tourism statistics as secondary tourists
(those coming from another destination in Tanzania before to
Zanzibar) and domestic tourists are not counted. This would
make the tourist count of 125,443 in 2005 a low estimate.

13. (U) Another visual check loophole with potential
consequences regarding TIP is the minimum drinking age.
Individuals under 18 are not allowed to be in a bar, but the
identification card system is not established, so bar
employees rely on one's physical appearance to gauge one's
age. If not satisfied that the individual is at least 18, an
employee can refuse entry.

Protection options lacking
14. (U) Victims of trafficking who do not want, or are
unable, to return home have limited options for receiving
assistance on Zanzibar. Community members may take them in
and some may be assisted at the SOS Children's Village school
in Mombasa near Stone Town that provides care for orphans.
The girls that contacted the police in Kiongwe stayed at the
police station, but not in cells, until transportation home
was arranged. However, there is no NGO known to be providing
assistance to TIP victims on Zanzibar. Tanzanian law
prohibits NGOs working on the mainland from operating on
Zanzibar, and vice versa, so IOM is actively seeking an
additional partner for providing assistance to victims on

15. (U) The initiative of Zanzibar officials to identify
patterns and loopholes in order to combat TIP is laudable, as
is their request for further training and assistance. Post
recommends that DOJ consider: (a) conducting training on
Zanzibar; (b) reviewing the Zanzibari law concerning TIP; and
(c) reviewing immigration procedures at entry points, as part
of the President's Initiative to Combat TIP in order to
improve security of Zanzibar's borders and improve the
capacity of Zanzibari officials to identify and prosecute TIP

16. (U) Rachel Yousey, Reports Officer for Africa in G/TIP
cleared this cable.

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