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‘Judicious use of N75b youth fund would check human trafficking’

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Executive Director, Human Development Initiatives (HDI) Nigeria, Mrs. Olufunso Owasanoye has called for judicious use of the N75b Youth Development Fund, as it would be a good tool to wage war against human trafficking. 
 
In a statement to mark this year’s World Day Against Human Trafficking, Owasanoye said it is pertinent to note that the Buhari-led administration recently declared a N75b Youth Development Fund, which could be harnessed towards empowering youths, who are vulnerable to trafficking disguised as migration.
   
“We, therefore, seize the opportunity of this year’s Day Against Human Trafficking to call on the Federal Government to ensure that this fund gets to the grassroots, by ensuring due process in the selection of beneficiaries.

 
“We are hopeful that the fund, if properly utilised, will empower many unemployed youths and save them from the agony of trafficking. We are also calling on all government agencies in the forefront of the fight against human trafficking, especially the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NATIP) to step up the fight, by ensuring inter-agency collaboration with law enforcement agencies for adequate enforcement of anti-trafficking laws.”
 
HDI also called on the National Orientation Agency (NOA) to increase sensitisation and community re-orientation to enlighten people on the risks of illegal migration.

“The government should put more security measures in place and ensure proper manning of state and national borders, to curtail the problem of illegal migration. We are also appealing to all Nigerians, especially the youths, to be wary of promises that seem too-good-to-be-true.

There can be no supply, if there is no demand for trafficking. We all have roles to play in curtailing human trafficking, such as spreading the news to put traffickers out of business and joining the campaign against the use of children as house help.”
 
She noted that to end human trafficking in Nigeria, all hands must be on deck as both government and citizens have roles. “HDI wishes to commend the present administration for efforts in evacuating Nigerians, who are stranded in many parts of the world, due to trafficking. However, much needs to be done in empowering survivors and potential victims of trafficking, while also ensuring the enforcement of laws against trafficking.”


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