——WE ARE WORRIED ABOUT TRAFFICKING OF NIGERIAN WOMEN TO MIDDLE EAST COUNTRIES…………. SAYS NAPTIP DG
The fight against human trafficking and another societal menace by the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) received a great boost as the Kano State Governor, His Excellency, Abdulahi Umar Ganduje promises to join hands with the Agency to ensure that Nigeria remains a trafficking free Country.
The Governor also lauded the Director-General of the Agency, Senator Basheer Garba Muhammed for his zeal, commitment, and innovation which he said had led to the ongoing repositioning of NAPTIP as well as bringing to fore some of the salient vital aspects of its mandates.
Governor Ganduje stated this in Kano while receiving Senator Basheer Garba Muhammed and members of the Management of NAPTIP at the Government House, Kano prior to the formal inauguration of the Kano State Task Force on Human Trafficking.
He said Kano State is a potential endemic State for human trafficking because of its status as an emerging business hub of the country bearing in mind the giant infrastructural investments in the areas of massive road construction, rail line resuscitation, industrialization, and rapid development of small and medium scale industries and other amenities.
“This is why we welcome the idea of the State Task Force on Human Trafficking. We shall partner with your Agency and the Task Force will be given the desired support. The previous Management of NAPTIP had narrowed their approach to issues of human trafficking alone. It is therefore commendable to know that you have identified other societal problems and you are now tackling them”, the Kano State Governor pointed out.
Earlier in His speech, the Director-General of NAPTIP, Senator Basheer Garba Muhammed who was giving a rousing welcome to Kano State, stated that the Task Force on Human Trafficking in a counter-trafficking initiative and a component of the awareness strategy of the Agency aimed at securing the support of critical stakeholders and partners in the fight against the evil of human trafficking and other social problems in the Country.
Senator Garba Muhammed stunned the Governor and other dignitaries at the programme as he disclosed that Kano State is highly endemic in the statistics of the rescue of victims of human trafficking as well as arrest and prosecution of offenders.
The NAPTIP boss said, “The problem of Human Trafficking and Irregular migration has become of national and international concern. A large number of Nigerians are trapped in sexual and labour exploitation in various African and European countries. Additionally, hundreds continue to die in transit along the Sahara Desert and the Mediterranean Sea. Last year reports emerged about human farms in some parts of Libya where black African migrants are allegedly kept in cages like animals and organs like eyes, kidneys, and lungs are harvested to service the medical needs of Europe.
” You may wish to note that from inception to date, NAPTIP has rescued a total of 16,277 victims of human trafficking, out of which 14,474 are Nigerians and 1,287 are from Kano State. This makes Kano State the most endemic State to human trafficking in Northern Nigeria and the second in the Country according to the States Vulnerability Index Analysis. In the same vein, out of the total of 482 convicted persons by the Agency from inception, 110 were from Kano Zonal Command, representing the highest in the country.
“Your Excellency, NAPTIP is worried about the ugly trend of the trafficking of young Nigerian women to the Middle East, who are mostly from Kano and neighboring States. In the last 10 days, NAPTIP has successfully rescued 104 victims. Additionally, the Kano Command in the last two months has successfully rescued another set of 12 Kano Indigenes in Agadez, Niger Republic, who were victims of child labour and have since been successfully rehabilitated and reunited with their families in Kano. For this reason, NAPTIP is requesting the collaboration with Kano State Government to be strengthened so as to bring this terror to an end.
“The challenges ahead of us are quite enormous. New initiatives must be developed for ensuring adequate resources for the rehabilitation of returnee victims of Human Trafficking and Irregular Migration in order to mitigate both menaces. Bigger and adequately equipped shelters, vocational training facilities, empowerment programmes, and scholarships must be put in place for the victims”, Senator Basheer Garba Muhammed stated.
In his speech, representative of the Team Leader of FIIAPP, Mr. Rafael Rios Molina, the partner supporting NAPTIP in the project, Mr. Segun Sanwo, said “Trafficking in persons being a clandestine type of crime requires a combined effort of all stakeholders, thus, the need for FIIAPP to support the establishment of the state task forces is premised on the need to strengthen State and non-State multi-sectoral response towards combating Human Trafficking in Nigeria.
“It is not in doubt that the government of Nigeria has committed lots of funds into fighting this crime since the establishment of NAPTIP but it is believed that no single government can fight this alone. It is in the recognition of this fact that the EU has committed (and still committing) a significant amount of funds to Nigeria to help in reducing the crime. For instance, the burden of ensuring that the NAPTIP Team attends the inauguration of these four (4) states of Kano, Katsina, Kaduna, and Jigawa.
“FIIAPP will continue to support all efforts geared towards combatting human trafficking especially, through this A-TIPSOM project which is fully funded by the EU”, he said.
The high point of the programme was the inauguration of the Task Force by the Kano State Governor.
Adekoye Vincent – For: Head, Press and Public Relations Unit, NAPTIP