Zimbabwe: One More Sign of Zimbabwe’s Decline

Women desperate for work trafficked to Kuwait

The advert in the jobs section of a Zimbabwean newspaper read: “Vacancies in the Middle East. For those interested please contact … “

When Soria Hove*, 34, spotted the ad earlier this year she immediately called the number provided and was told to visit the agency’s office and bring along her qualifications.

A few days later, anxious but hopeful, she walked into a well-appointed office with neatly-dressed, professional staff. The job on offer was as a maid in Kuwait. The salary would be US$750 with $150 deducted each month as reimbursement for her air ticket.

Hove was over the moon. The average wage in Zimbabwe is $253 a month–and that’s for just five percent of the population who actually have a formal job.

“It was an opportunity of a lifetime,” she told IRIN. “Finally I could earn an income for the first time and support my family.”

If it seemed almost too good to be true, that’s because it was. Hove wasn’t getting a real job, instead she was about to be trafficked and exploited.