Sex Workers Scale up Formalization Quest

Sex workers operating along Harare’s Avenue streets on Tuesday convened a meeting to push for government legalize their trade amid concerns that the police is failing to protect them from abuses due to illicit nature of their operations.

By Tendai Guvamombe

An Avenues resident named Marau who witnessed the meeting held along Josiah Chinamano Avenue said sex workers discussed ways to reach government with their concerns.

“I was surprised to see these girls on Friday afternoon convening a meeting under a tree along Josiah Chinamano Avenue discussing aloud, on how they were to seek legalization of sex work”, said one Marau.

Badman Chinzira, a tout at Bindura hiking point along Second Street Extension said sex workers raised a number of issues including rampant abuse and robberies which they said were happening because their trade is not formalized.

“They convened a meeting on Tuesday, their motive is to compel the responsible authorities to address their concerns and obviously they want their activities to be formalized,” said Chinzira.

One of the sex workers, Carol admitted to convening meetings with other fellow colleagues to find solutions to the myriad of problems they encounter in their trade.

“We met here because it’s high time the government grant us our freedom, we are seeking legalization of our profession,” she said.

Another sex worker, Nyasha opened up on their drive to push for recognition though she could not reveal how they intend to engage government.

“We are humans, people now take advantage of us, robbing us of our monies and gadgets and at times we are raped because there is no law to protect us,” said Nyasha.

Richard Kavhu, a member of the African Indigenization Churches and a social commentator lammed sex workers drive to have their trade legalized saying government had no business listening to their issues as it is against biblical principles.

“We cannot allow formalization of sex work, Zimbabwe is a Christian country and it is important that we uphold the values of Christianity,” said Kavhu.

Developed countries have legalized sex work and have established Red Lights Districts where the trade officially done without any hindrance. Countries like Netherlands include Red Lights Districts on their tourists’ guides.

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