TACLOBAN CITY- The Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO) has organized an anti-child trafficking team to combat possible cases of trafficking involving children. The teams will be deployed to various ports in Leyte as traffickers usually uses these ports in smuggling out their victims, said Clotilde Malatbalat, provincial social welfare and development officer. Malatbalat said that the creation of the anti-child trafficking team will reduce the number of cases of child trafficking in the province.

She also said that the syndicates involved in child trafficking would usually use the port area as their way out because they cannot easily transport their victims by air or by land. Here in Leyte, Malatbalat said that there were already several instances where the suspects were apprehended by authorities in various ports in the province. The team will be deployed in the ports located in Bato, Hilongos, Palompon, Isabel and Baybay City excluding the port area of Ormoc for having highly strict requirements before they will allow a minor to be transported.

The PSWDO asked also the help of the Philippine National Police in order to strengthen their campaign against child trafficking “The creation of anti-child trafficking team was one of the plans of the provincial government though the efforts of Governor Dominic Petilla in order to reduce the occurrence of child trafficking cases in the province,” Malatbalat said. “All syndicates in the province involved in child trafficking will surely have hard time on continuing their operations in the province because of the creation of the Anti-Child Trafficking Team who are eyeing on them,” she added.(RYAN GABRIEL LLOSA ARCENAS)