Women activists in Makassar call for end to human trafficking

Okezone – March 8, 2011
IWD rally at Losari Beach in Makassar - March 8, 2011 (Tempo)
IWD rally at Losari Beach in Makassar - March 8, 2011 (Tempo)

Andi Aisyah, Makassar – Scores of women activists held an action commemorating the 100th International Women’s Day (IWD) in the South Sulawesi provincial capital of Makassar today.

The protesters, who came from a number of different organisations under the banner of the Indonesian Women’s Front (BPI), took to the streets calling for an end to the sale of human beings or human trafficking, particularly women. Demanding equal rights and obligations between men and women, they also handed out brochures to pedestrians.

In a speech action coordinator Bunga Rosi said that the exploitation of women is excessive and is taking place in various sectors and in both the public as well as the domestic domain. She added that this was happening because the government has failed to protect women or fulfill their rights.

“Women often become the targets of physical, psychological and sexual violence. This must end, President SBY [Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono] as the leader of the country must accommodate this demand. SBY has failed to bring prosperity to women”, said Bunga on Tuesday March 8.

During the demonstration that continued through to the afternoon, the protesters also brought banners with messages such as “Stop trafficking women laborers overseas”, “Stop the exploitation of workers” and “Stop domestic violence”.

IWD was also commemorated with a protest action at the Ratu Indah Mall organised by the South Sulawesi Indonesian Women’s Coalition, the South Sulawesi Anging Mamiri Women’s Solidarity and the Women’s Issues Monitoring Forum (FPMP). The groups also collected funds for the empowerment of women. (ton)

Source: Hari Perempuan se-Dunia: Aktivis Perempuan Desak Hentikan Human Trafficking – Okezone. Selasa, 8 Maret 2011

[Slightly abridged translation by James Balowski.]