Mzuzu Police Station has expressed concern over the increase in children in and around bars and night clubs in the city’s townships for commercial sex.
Speaking in an interview yesterday, Mzuzu Police Station spokesperson Paul Tembo said police have since launched an awareness campaign on child protection to sensitise the public to the dangers of child prostitution.
The development comes after police and the department of Social Welfare rescued five girls from prostitution around popular clubs at the city’s Old Town in January this year.
“In this campaign, we are targeting several groups of people such as bar and rest house owners, parents and school children,’’ Tembo said.
He said children visiting bars and night clubs risk contracting HIV, a virus that causes Aids.
Mzimba North and Mzuzu City social welfare officer Edward Chisanga said he is monitoring the rescued girls. He commended Mzuzu Police Station for the campaign to ensure protection of children’s rights.
“We reunited the rescued girls with their families and we counselled them. We also advised the girls to go back to school. One of the girls fled from home and is back into prostitution while three others have gone back to school. The other one is yet to go back to school but she is being monitored,” he said.
According to 2013 United Nations (UN) statistics, 35 million people globally are living with HIV and Aids and 6 300 people are infected with the virus on daily basis.