Two Bruneian youths are striving to make a difference in the fight against human trafficking which they believe, is nothing less than slavery.
Dayang Amal Kasibah Binti Bahari, a member of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) alumni, and Dayang Nurhayatun Najibah binti Kifli are taking the fight against human trafficking head on by establishing YAS (Youth Against Slavery) for an awareness campaign.
A student of Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD), Dayang Amal Kasibah binti Bahari, revealed the campaign during a presentation at a YSEALI networking event hosted by the US embassy at Radisson Hotel yesterday.
In an interview, Dayang Amal Kasibah said, “We need to raise awareness on this important issue. Not many people are aware about it. Either that or they don’t talk about it. We want this issue to be highlighted and discussed.”
This September, she highlighted, they will organise an art exhibition to raise awareness on human trafficking and invite 50 youths from Sixth Form Centres and Universities to discuss on the current situation in Brunei Darussalam.
According to her, YASBrunei is part of an Asean network. “We have a team in each Asean country. Teams in Singapore and Malaysia have just organised conferences while Cambodia conducted a radio show while Laos will hold an art exhibition like Brunei Darussalam.”
The official committee of YASBrunei will also be launched during the art exhibition, she added.
On the issue of human trafficking in Brunei Darussalam, she said, “There are two common issues – one involving foreign workers and the other about bogus employment offers.
“Bogus employment offer on social media can sometime be a trap because we can’t verify the source and the aspiring job seekers may end up as forced labour.
“I was invited by my friend Nurhayatun Najibah binti Kifli to join YASBrunei. The international organisation for migration that focuses on human trafficking took interest in her work and we were invited to attend the ‘train the trainer’ workshop in Bangkok this February to gain insight on human trafficking. In June, YEASLI invited me to the US for a similar workshop so that we gain better perspective of human trafficking in Asia and the US,” Dayang Amal Kasibah explained.
She said the workshops were an eye opener. “Besides developing countries, we learned that developed countries like Singapore and the US also faced the same issues.” After the art exhibition, the duo hopes to conduct a workshop and a conference together with the labour department as well as Department of Immigration and National Registration Department. She also called on Brunei’s youth to join as volunteers to help in organising the upcoming events. Interested youths can contact Amal Kasibah through email email@example.com.