Woman busts prostitution ring in Lagos, rescues seven girls
Lagos State police commissioner Abiodun Alabi[/caption]The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Angels Assurance Security Outfits Limited, Ms Ange Ify Udeogalanya, has rescued seven girls from being trafficked to Ghana by an international prostitution ring.
The Guardian gathered that Udeogalanya, whose firm operates in Amuwo Odofin, FESTAC Town, Lagos State, discovered the first girl simply identified as Onyinyechi last Saturday morning, and later used information from her to rescue other girls from hotels in the area.
In the process of rescuing the girls, Udeogalanya and members of her staff also arrested three of the alleged traffickers.
The suspects were later handed over to the Area E Police Command for transfer to the National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP).
One of the suspects, identified as Ejike, was alleged to have forcibly had sexual intercourse with two of the girls several times before his arrest. The two girls are of ages 14 and 16.
It was also learnt that before the rescue of the girls, the first batch of girls and three boys had been moved from the hotels to Ghana via road. The traffickers reportedly brought the girls from Akwa-Ibom and Abia states. They promised them jobs as cleaners in Lagos State, but when they got to Lagos, they told them to prepare to be taken to Ghana for prostitution. The girls were told that the Ghanaian Cedi was higher in value than the Nigerian naira, thus they would become rich within days of putting themselves to work.
The Guardian learnt that girls were housed in two different hotels and were locked in their rooms. It was in those rooms that the said Ejike allegedly went to have sex with the two girls and groped the breasts of others.
The 14-year-old girl said: “On the first day of my arrival, he had sex with me twice in the room where he had locked me. After that, every time he was going out, he would lock me in. I stayed there for three days and in those three days, he was always having sex with me.”
One of the rescued girls, Harmony, said she had been trafficked once to Anambra State by two men, where she was forced by her madam to have sex with 35 men per day at N1, 000 per client. She was told by her traffickers that she was going to Anambra to work as a waitress in a bar. She was also promised N20, 000 as a salary.
Harmony, the first child in a family of five children, with a crippled father and a mother selling beans cake by the roadside, felt it was a good deal but when she got to the supposed beer parlour, she was shocked at what she saw.
“I saw nine-year-old girls, 10-year-old girls and 15-year-old girls being forced by their madams to hustle. I asked a woman there what the girls were doing just to be sure, and she said prostitution. My madam said I should work for her, but I said no. She starved me of food until I had to start doing the work.
The suffering there was too much. I was punished several times by kneeling on periwinkle shells and broken bottles. Clients pay N1000 and they are usually in a queue. In a day, I made between N30, 000 and N40,000, which means between 30 and 40 men in a day. My madam collected all the money. There was a time when a client gave me N5000, but he did not touch me, he only asked me to leave that hotel. My madam saw the money and collected it from me,” Harmony recalled.
The leader of the prostitution ring has been identified as one Ebuka, who disappeared on the day the plot was bust.
It was learnt that following the bust, Ebuka has been calling Udeogalanya with a Ghana telephone line. He initially asked her to name her price so that she could release the girls back to him and back out. He later offered the CEO N2 million, which she turned down.
Udeogalanya, who said that her heart bled for the girls immediately moved them to NAPTIP, even as she expressed concern for her own safety.
The bust was made last Saturday and the suspects have been with the police, rather than transfer the case to NAPTIP, the agency in charge of such matters, the police at Area E Command are contemplating charging the matter to court.
When The Guardian contacted the Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Benjamin Hundeyin, on Wednesday to know when the matter would be transferred to NAPTIP, the facts of the case and the names of the three suspects, he said the matter would be transferred that same day (Wednesday).