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NAPTIP rescues 15,000 human trafficking victims, secures 404 offenders’ conviction

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Julie Okah-Donli

• Delta flays trade as Kenyan activist blames menace on bad governance, traditions
The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has disclosed it rescued 15,000 victims, convicted 404 traffickers, while several other offenders are being prosecuted across the country.

It made this known in Asaba, Delta State at the on-going workshop with lawyers, top security operatives and internationally acclaimed human rights activists.

The workshop with the theme, “Winning the Fight Against Human Trafficking in Nigeria,” was held at the behest of Attorneys General Aliance/African Alliance Partnership (AGA/AAP) in collaboration with the Delta State Task Force on Human Trafficking.

While the stakeholders blamed the menace on lack of good governance and discriminatory traditions, the Delta State Government described Human Trafficking as an evil trade that ravages society.

Delta State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Peter Mrakpor, in his welcome address, said perpetrators of trafficking in persons have become more daring in their approaches, which means that stakeholders should not relent in fighting the menace.

Presenting her paper, a Senior Deputy District Attorney, Human Trafficking Unit, Miiko Anderson from the United State of America (USA), elaborated on the unique dynamics between traffickers, victims and the community, stressing the importance of collaborations between countries and the need for preventive actions.

In her opening remarks, Director General of NAPTIP, Julie Okah-Donli, who lampooned corrupt and security agencies for frustrating justice, decried the rush for menial jobs and slavery abroad on lack of self-esteem.

She described trafficking in persons, which heralded the obnoxious slave trade as one of the ills bedeviling society, saying a total national reorientation to moral values and self-esteem is need to stem the ugly trend had generated serious concerns, led to various legislatures enacted against it.

However, Anderson, who deplored sex trafficking of minors, narrated her experience in prosecuting offenders, said, “It is a federal and state crime that involves the recruiting, habouring, providing, obtaining and transporting persons for labour or commercial sex; through cohesion.

“It is exploitation for the purpose of profit and it is a deprivation of personal liberty, which is sustained and substantiated.”

Besides, Okah-Donli told journalists that inn line with its international obligations, Nigeria domesticated the Perlemo Protocol to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking in persons, especially women and children by enacting the Trafficking In Persons (Prohibition) Law Enforcement Administration (TIPPEA) Act 2003, which was amended in 2005.

“To give potency and force to the fight against trafficking, the TIPPEA was re-enacted and it came into effect on March 5, 2015,” she explained.

Also speaking, a Kenyan activist, Anita Nyanjang, while presenting her paper titled, “An Overview of Human Trafficking in West Africa,” blamed lack of good governance in Africa for the illicit trade.

She cited the unfavourable and discriminatory traditions in Africa as a motivating factor to illegal migrations, mainly to America and Europe.

While commending the Delta State government for making the event a reality, Nyanjong thanked NAPTIP for raising the bar in Africa as most countries on the continent were studying its modus operandi for adoption.


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