Stakeholders attribute COVID-19, others to surge in Human Trafficking
The Founder, Live Abundantly, Dr. Onyerinma Ama, has attributed outbreak of Coronavirus to rising cases of human trafficking, due to job losses, poverty and school closures, among others.
Ama disclosed this during an awareness Road Walk to commemorate the World Day Against Trafficking In Persons, in Ikeja, Lagos, an event organised in collaboration with National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and Nigeria Police Force (NPF).
The United Nations designated the day to raise awareness on the situation of victims of human trafficking and for the promotion and protection of their rights.
The Southwest Regional Director, NAPTIP, Kehinde Akomolafe, ascribed trafficking to search for sudden wealth and get rich-quick syndrome among Nigerians, adding that the systemic trafficking problem had heightened because of the pandemic, as more people were starving because “there is no money and no work.”
She said: “Over 70 per cent of detected trafficked victims are women and girls, majorly for sex exploitation, forced labour, forced marriage and all that. People don’t understand that there is nothing joyous about the fake trip abroad…The issue is actually getting higher. Unfortunately, we don’t have data. Human trafficking is a cartel. It is the third largest cartel in the world that is worth $150b…”
Akomolafe lamented that human trafficking was on the rise in the Southwest, saying: “Most of them think anything outside the country is better. They want a better life, greener pastures, but ignorant of the fact that the grass is only greener where you water it.
“They are predominantly lazy. They’ll rather go for househelp jobs, which are usually what they offer them, and they become slaves. The routes are usually the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, Dubai, Kuwait… Victims believe they can easily make it when they get there. But instead, they end up becoming slaves and sex machines…”
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