27 Zimbabwean students arrested in Cyprus for prostitution and drugs

PARENTS have been urged to make sure that scholarships that their children get for overseas are authentic as some students end up as sex slaves or pushing drugs to earn a living on foreign lands.

Proportional representation legislator Lindiwe Maphosa made the remark in Parliament during a debate on the recent trip by a Parliamentary delegation to Turkey that was led by Speaker Jacob Mudenda in which the MPs were confronted with the constant arrest of Zimbabwean students for various crimes such as prostitution and drug dealing.

Maphosa, who was part of the delegation, said 27 students had been arrested in Cyprus to date for various crimes including drug trafficking and prostitution.

“It was highlighted mostly in Cyprus which is near Turkey where we have about 27 students being arrested there for various crimes ranging from drug trafficking and prostitution.

“So Madame Speaker Ma’am, who would take these scholarships at face value to please first go through the right authorities to ascertain that these scholarships are indeed authentic because we have our children going to be even sex slaves because of these scholarships,” said Maphosa.

She said that Zimbabwe and Turkey had a scholarship programme which used to take 20 students but these had since been increased to 35.

Maphosa said Zimbabwe was now ascertaining whether the scholarship offered quality education that fits into the country’s economic growth programme.

Meanwhile, Maphosa revealed that the trip, which included former MDC-T acting president Thokozani Khupe, was a learning curve for her.

“Having been part of the delegation, I will try to pick on some of the things that were left out though a lot has been said Madam Speaker Ma’am.

“Of note, I would like to just say that it was an experience for me as a young parliamentarian and as a first timer to have joined the Speaker of Parliament Hon. Adv. Jacob F. N. Mudenda and the delegation that went to Turkey.

“Of interest also was the fact that I turned 40 years on 4th July and that happened when I was travelling to Turkey. The interesting part was that the Hon. Speaker led the delegation in singing a ‘happy birthday’ for me. So for that, it will remain a very important aspect and treasure that I will take,” she said. ■

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