As parts of its efforts of championing the cause of legal migration in Ghana, the government has been tasked to help eliminate illegal migration agencies operating in the country.
It is obvious that, these illegal agencies operate with impunity, dragging the name of the noble business which creating numerous job opportunities for the youth into disrepute and also causing harm the country.
Addressing Journalists at a press conference in Accra, the Chairman of Ghana Association of Private Employment Agencies (GHAPEA) Alhaji Saeed A.M. Shereef, hinted that there are about three hundred (300) illegal agencies operating so far in the country.
This he said, there was a need for the government and other concerned authorities to help eliminate these unscrupulous illegal operators, who are not only causing harm to Ghana’s good reputation and to the dignity of Ghanaians; but also pushing the legal ones out of business.
“It is very worrying to us to realize that many government authorities and stakeholders do not know or do not recognize the existence of GHAPEA.
According to him, GHAPEA was established on July 15, 2015, in the corridors of the Ghana Parliament, upon the directives of the then Parliamentary Select Committee for Employment, Social Welfare and State Enterprises.
Since then, our Association has been working assiduously to put itself in order to be able to achieve its aims and objectives. And also to surmount the problems of unemployment and illegal migration in the country.
This he said, currently with 26 members out of a total 52 agencies licensed with the Ghana Labor Department, GHAPEA has many success stories. These include:
Within the first six month of its established, GHAPEA successfully wrote and started implementing its own constitution and code of ethics.
GHAPEA was officially inaugurated after just a year of its establishment by the then Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Hon. Haruna Idrissu, MP.
GHAPEA has successfully established good relations with some of the key stakeholders of legal migration- The Minister for Employment and Labour Relations- headed by the Hon . Ignatius Baffour Awuah, MP and Minister for Employment and Labour Relations , the Ghana Labour Department, the International Organizations for Migration (IOM), the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit of the Ministry of Interior (AHTU) of the Criminal Investigations Department , Police Headquarters –Accra.
Members of GHAPEA have successfully secured decent jobs with lucrative remuneration for hundreds of Ghanaians who are now earning good wages.
The General Secretary of Ghana Association of Private Employment Agencies (GHAPEA) Rev. Dr. Ashie Ocansey, noted that legal migration has contributed immensely to the socio-economic development of the country.
She has therefore appealed to the government and stakeholders to help them grow stronger in order to bring sanity to the foreign recruitment and migration sector.
This she said, would help bring gainful employment opportunities to Ghanaians.
She also seized the opportunity to advise the public to be wary of the illegal agencies operating without a license.
“Anybody who intends to migrate for greener pastures must do so legally through any of the 26 members of GHAPEA for safe and comfortable migration”, she advised.
By: Isaac Kofi Dzokpo