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BBC Malawi WhatsApp group that saved women trafficked to Oman?

The 32-year-old mother wept as she recalled the violence that forced her into slavery in Oman, hoping for a better life. Like other women interviewed by the BBC, Georgina believed she was working as a driver in Dubai. He owned and operated a small business in Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe, when an agent approached him about making more money in the Middle East. By the time the plane landed in Muscat, the capital of Oman, he realized he had been cheated and trapped with his family, who worked hard seven days a week.

“It got to the point where I just couldn’t do it anymore,” she said, explaining how she was able to get two hours of sleep. Soon her boss was forcing her to have sex and threatening to fire her if she said anything. “He’s not alone,” she said. “He brings his friends and pays for it later.” She attempted to explain her coercion into engaging in sexual activity, expressing, “I was devastated.”

Approximately 2 million women work in the Arab countries of the Persian Gulf. Do Bold conducted a survey of 400 Omani women in 2023. Almost all those rescued were victims of human trafficking, according to the US State Department’s Human Trafficking Report. About a third said they had experienced sexual harassment, and half said they had experienced physical abuse or discrimination. After a few weeks, Georgina became frustrated and sent a Facebook message asking for help.

In New Hampshire, thousands of miles away, Pilirani Mombe Nyoni, a 38-year-old Malawian social media activist, noticed the message and decided to launch an investigation. To protect Georgina’s safety, he contacted her, deleted her Facebook messages and passed on a WhatsApp number that was circulating in Oman. He quickly realized that this was a common problem. “The first victim was Georgina. Then there was one girl, then two girls, then three girls,” he told the BBC.

Then I remarked, “I’m considering deleting the [WhatsApp] group because it feels akin to human trafficking.” Over 50 Malawian women employed as domestic workers in Oman have become members of the group. Soon, members flooded the WhatsApp group with audio messages and videos, some of which were too scary to watch. They depicted the appalling conditions that subjected the women. Upon entering the country, authorities confiscated the passports of many individuals and prohibited them from leaving.


Blog By:- ExpertSadar

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