Sexual exploitation of young girls has become a major cause for concern that requires urgent and combined attention if efforts to curb the spread of HIV/AIDS are to materialise.

The illegal and culturally immoral trend of children engaging in commercial sex work in Zimbabwe is now rife with sex predators luring girls as young as 10 years into sexual activities in exchange for money.

The most worrying fact is that the young victims are often forced to engage in unprotected sex thereby risking contracting HIV/AIDS.

Speaking on the sidelines of the national dialogue between parliamentary representatives and officials representing the victims, gender commissioner, Mrs Tsungirirai Hungwe Chimbunde and legislator for Umzingwane constituency, Mrs Priscilla Misihairabwi Mushonga said there is need for a multi stakeholder approach in tackling the menace.

Organisers of the event Katswe Sistahood launched the staying negative campaign early this year that targets children who are involved in commercial sex work in various communities.

Poverty has been cited as the main cause for commercial sex work as a means for survival hence the need for stakeholders to look up with ways of ensuring unconsenting minors are protected from being abused.