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Monthly Archives: October 2021


Southern African Migration Management Project hosts Media Training for the SADC and IOC Region.

Participants at the virtual Media Training

The SAMM project hosted a media training course “Promoting a positive image of migrants and recognizing their contribution to development in the SADC region from the 20th to 29th October 2021. The main objective of this course was to improve the capacity of media professionals on reporting fairly and effectively on the key migration thematic areas covered by the SAMM project.

Through this course, the SAMM project raised the media awareness concerning the promotion of a positive image of migrants, asylum seekers, refugees, stateless persons, and IDPs and the identification of their contribution to development in the SADC region. A well-informed media can positively influence policymaking to improve the situation of mixed movement population and their families, as well as reap the benefits of migration, asylum seekers and refugees for the countries at large. The e-learning course “Promoting a positive image of migrants and recognizing their contribution to development in the SADC region was a collaborative initiative of the ILO and its Southern Africa Migration Management (SAMM) partners (the International Organization for Migration, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees)

Worldwide, migrants are still too often victims of racist, discriminatory and xenophobic attacks. The media often promotes a toxic public narrative on migration, and reinforces stigmatisation through the inclusion of xenophobic and discriminatory messages. Indeed, the press often portrays migrants as criminals, illegals and as “stealing jobs from national workers”. Furthermore, migrants are frequently scapegoats during economic recessions. It is essential to change negative perceptions and attitudes through evidence or fact-based journalism and broadcasting that contribute to eliminate public misconceptions. Indeed, a fair and balanced reportage that recognizes migrants’ contribution to the economic growth and development of countries of origin, transit and destination is urgently needed.

35 Journalists, editors, communication officers and media practitioners from different media houses and agencies across the SADC region, attended the training. Robust discussions were held on issues of migration in the region and how to report on the complexities of this topic.

Participants share their perceptions on the common narrative around migrants


6th Ministerial Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa (MIDSA) Maputo, Mozambique

Ministers and Senior Experts of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), with representatives of IOM, partners and donors. Maputo, Mozambique, 28 October 2021.



6th Ministerial Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa (MIDSA)
Maputo, Mozambique

Maputo, 28 October 2021 – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) Regional Office for Southern Africa,  the  Secretariat for the Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa (MIDSA), facilitated the sixth Ministerial meeting of the Migration Dialogue for Southern Africa (MIDSA), in Maputo, Mozambique, from 25 to 28 October 2021.

The four day meeting convened Migration Experts and Senior Officials of SADC Member States from ministries with migration related functions and responsibilities notably; Home Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Labour, Health,  , Human rights, Social Welfare/ Development, Youth and Gender and relevant partners including technical  experts  from UN sister Agencies such as; ILO UNHCR, UNODC among others, under the theme “Reviewing Approaches to Safe, Orderly, and Regular Migration in the Context of COVID-19 in the Southern Region”.

The impact of COVID-19 pandemic and the related preventive measures such as, border closures, lockdowns, suspension of international flights etc, heavily affected migrants in countries of origin, transit and destination. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the unique challenges faced by governments and communities in managing public health threats along the migration continuum and the interlinkages between public health and managing safe migration, including at borders, especially at Points of Entry (PoEs) on an unprecedented scale.

The COVID-19 pandemic’s overall impact on human mobility globally cannot be understated – limiting all but the essential movement of persons and creating a triumvirate of crises – health, protection and protracted socioeconomic impacts. Between March 21 and December 29, 2020, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Regional Office for Southern Africa recorded a total of 166,872 migrant returnees from countries within and outside the Southern Africa Region.

“Migration has always been with us, but with the impact of COVID-19 pandemic, we felt the need to deliberate with all the relevant ministries of the SADC Member States with mandates on migration, as well as with partners, including the Regional Economic Communities (RECs); to reflect on how we can collectively work on harmonized approaches to ensure safe, orderly, and regular migration, in the Southern African region, in accordance with the Global Compact of Migration (GMC)”, said Charles Allan Kwenin, IOM Regional Director for Southern Africa.

The discussions formulated recommendations on issues around human mobility, borders and managing public health threats in the region, protection needs of migrants, strengthening the approaches for the collection and use of migration data in Southern African region, and unpacking the Integrative and Mobility Agenda for Socio-Economic Recovery (Skills Mobility & Diaspora Engagement).

The Ministers adopted the key recommendations of the MIDSA as well as the Maputo Diaspora Declaration, thus requesting IOM in collaboration with relevant United Nations (UN) Agencies and partners, in coordination with the Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states and the Secretariat, to develop a regional programme and a regional diaspora policy to facilitate the engagement of the Diaspora and transnational communities as agents of development among SADC member states.

In its capacity as the current Chair of SADC, the Government of Malawi will host the next MIDSA meeting in 2022, at experts and  senior officials level.

For more information, please contact Mr. Wonesai Sithole, Regional Policy and Liaison Officer
Interview: Charles Allan Kwenin, IOM Regional Director for Southern Africa

Changing the Narrative on Migration: Call for Participants

Are you a journalist or media professional working on refugee issues or have a desire to do so? With nearly 80 million forcibly displaced people worldwide, and rising anti-migrant rhetoric and hate speech, it is imperative to build capacity for reporting on refugee and migration issues ethically and accurately. We are pleased to send you this call for participants for the upcoming “Changing the Narrative” project. The training programme will bring together a group of 12 journalists and media professionals from across Africa, Europe, and the Middle East to develop skills and capacity for reporting on refugee issues.

The programme will help strengthen media coverage of migration and refugee issues through skills building, networking, sharing of experiences, and learning more from experts in this field. The training will take place online in January; on-site visits and other exposure activities may be planned depending on pandemic restrictions.

The deadline to apply is Monday, 15 November at 12:00 noon (CET, Geneva time). Please see and the call for participants for all details and conditions. Please contact project coordinator, Erin Green ( should you have any questions.

The Changing the Narrative training programme is a project of WACC regional associations in Europe, Middle East, and Africa. WACC is a non-governmental organisation that builds on communication rights to promote social justice.

To learn more about WACC, please visit See also

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency: 70 years protecting people forced to flee.




Kasane, 11-13 October 2021 – UNODC in collaboration with the Department of Defence, Justice and Security convened a Judicial Training of Trainers Against Trafficking in Persons (TiP) in Kasane, Botswana from the 11 to 13 July, which is part of UNODC priorities in the SADC Region in enhancing the capacity of criminal justice practitioners in the response to human trafficking using human and victim centred approaches under the joint UNODC-SADC Regional Programme (2013 -2023). The Regional Programme aims to support the SADC countries to respond to the evolving threats and challenges related to crime, drugs and terrorism in all its manifestations.

The objectives of the training were to strengthen capacity of Judicial officers to effectively address trafficking in persons with a special emphasis on vulnerabilities of victims and the trauma they suffer; strengthen Judicial officers’ understanding of vulnerability and its role in presenting challenges to evidence and using tools that explain psychology and culture with special emphasis on child victims to resolve the evidential challenges; build the capacity of judicial officers on Sentencing principles on anti-trafficking in persons and lastly to build judicial officers capacity on adult learning principles for effective judicial reasoning.

The training workshop was in line with UNODC Strategic Vision for Africa 2030, which aims to provide innovative ways to support Member States and stakeholders over the next 10 years to strengthen crime prevention, enhance the effectiveness of criminal justice systems, counter organized crime and corruption, promote balanced drug control and improve the rule of law. Furthermore, UNODC is committed to gender mainstreaming and exercises a proactive gender perspective in the process of assessing the implications of any planned action for both women and men, hence, the workshop was designed in line with UNODC Gender Strategy.

In the Southern African Development Community (SADC), one unique trend that stands out in the region is that convictions on human trafficking remain low. UNODC has over the years convened Regional Judicial Trainings on Combating Trafficking in Persons for Judges and Magistrates in order to strengthen the adjudication of trafficking in persons cases. The convening of training of trainers for criminal justice practitioners on anti-trafficking in persons remains a key intervention in the response to human trafficking in the region. Hence, such trainings enhance the institutionalization and sustainability of anti-trafficking in persons interventions in the region.

During the official opening of the workshop, Hon. Thomas Mmusi, Minister of Defence, Justice and Security said that “judicial education on emerging crimes like human trafficking is extremely important. Complex legislation which we continue to draft, and other legal issues in today’s world require continual education and training. In addition, increasing media scrutiny also require that our judicial decisions are appropriate, fair and palatable to the general public to whom we account. This Training of Trainers workshop on Combating Trafficking in Persons, is therefore, indicative of Botswana’s efforts to ensure that we have an accountable, highly educated, resourceful and competent judiciary”.

UNODC has over the years provided technical support to the Republic of Botswana on the domestication of the Trafficking in Persons Protocol. This support has involved the strengthening the collection and analysis of human trafficking data, supporting the harmonization and operationalization of the Trafficking in Persons Act, building the capacity of criminal justice practitioners on combating trafficking in persons and supporting awareness raising initiatives on combating trafficking in persons.

The outcomes of the workshop include the following: the trained judicial officers will convene workshops whether formal or informal with their colleagues within the next three months; more training on Psycho-social issues related to TIP on the handling of Children and Witnesses will be convened for judicial officers in Botswana as that was identified as a gap during the training; the Ministry of Defence, Justice and Security will collaborate with UNODC to develop human trafficking sentencing guidelines.

Group discussion: Human Trafficking case analyses

Furthermore, after the 3-day training of trainers, the participants were able to describe indicators of human trafficking; critical role of Judicial Officers in Human Trafficking cases and understanding the vulnerabilities including victims and witnesses; distinguish human trafficking from smuggling of migrants; discuss current global debates on the element of exploitation and the  issue of consent; describe and apply key sentencing considerations and describe and apply key principles relating to non-criminalization of trafficked persons. The training workshop was attended by Judges and Magistrates from across all Botswana’s districts; officials from the Ministry of Defence, Justice and Security, officials from, the International Association of Women Judges (IAWJ-Botswana Chapter) and UNODC officials.

This Training of Trainers was held under the Southern Africa Migration Management (SAMM) Project which is a model of ONE-UN approach collaborative effort between 4 UN development and humanitarian agencies: the ILO, the IOM, UNODC and UNHCR. The overall objective of this programme is to improve migration management in the Southern Africa and Indian Ocean region.