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Hard times await human traffickers and migrant smugglers across the nation as the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS), are to establish a joint operational working group to combat human trafficking and Smuggling of Migrants in the country.

The working group will ensure prompt information sharing, effective referral mechanism procedure as well as swift tracking of human trafficking and smuggling of migrant cases so as to reduce the incidence of trafficking in Persons.

This was agreed upon by the NIS and NAPTIP Managements recently in Abuja during a visit to the Comptoller-General of Immigration, Mr. Muhammad Babandede by the Management of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), led by the Acting Director – General, Mr. Abdulrazak Dangiri.

Speaking during the visit the Acting Director – General of NAPTIP congratulated the Comptroller General on his appointment describing it as a well deserved elevation bearing in mind his professional skills and precedence.

The NAPTIP helmsman disclosed that as part of efforts to enhance the operations of the Agency towards effective and prompt service delivery, series of capacity development trainings have been lined up for the Officers of NAPTIP.

He therefore sought the cooperation of the NIS in using some of its training facilities as platform for the capacity development.

In his remarks, the Comptroller General of the Nigerian Immigration Service who was pioneer Director, Investigation and Monitoring of the Agency, stated that the due to the nature of human trafficking which is now a global concern, there is the need for inter Agency collaboration and supports not only from the governmental actors but other stakeholders in the nation.

While commending the Agency for the modest achievements recorded since its creation in the areas of awareness creation , prosecution of human trafficking offenders as well as rescue, rehabilitation and empowerment of victims of human trafficking, Mr. Babandede urged NAPTIP to beam its searchlights on middle men and recruiters of human trafficking who are usually in Nigeria rather than exerting operational energies and resources on high profile traffickers, most of who are outside the country.

Nneka Aniagoh

For: Head, Press and Public Relations