Director-General, (DG), of NAPTIP, Dr Fatima Waziri-Azi, while inaugurating the board at the weekend, said the prevalence of human trafficking in the state calls for the stepping up of anti-trafficking efforts towards ending the rising trend before it becomes much more entrenched.
In a communique signed by NAPTIP’s Press officer, Vincent Adekoya, the DG noted that between November 2021 to August 2022, 111 trafficking victims who are 111 indigenes of Taraba State were rescued by NAPTIP and other law enforcement agencies in the State.
The DG said generally, Nigeria is currently experiencing a rise in internal trafficking internally across the board for the purposes of labour and sexual exploitation among others hence the need for the agency’s renewed effort to stem the tide.
She explained that in terms of geographic prevalence, the nation is recently witnessing an upsurge in human trafficking in the North East with an increase in cases of domestic servitude, orphanage trafficking, buying and selling of children and trafficking for sexual exploitation and that is why the agency has resolved to strengthen partnership with all the states by setting up a states task force that will spearhead the drive to go after human traffickers.
Waziri-Azi lamented that “Human Trafficking in Nigeria is not a just problem; it is a crisis which has become an international and national concern, especially with a large number of Nigerians trapped in sexual and labour exploitation in various African and European countries.
“Human trafficking is a multi-billion-dollar global industry and second amongst transnational organized crime that exacts high human costs leaving many trapped in exploitative situations worldwide. Even though accurate data is difficult to come by, due to the clandestine nature of the crime, the International Labour Organization, (ILO), estimates that no fewer than 40.3 million victims are currently trapped in different forms of human trafficking across the globe with Nigerians accounting for a significant number.
The DG further said 68 percent of trafficking takes place internally while about 39 percent of it happens across borders.
“The challenges ahead of us are enormous but we remain undaunted, and we must develop new initiatives for ensuring adequate resources for the effective operationalization of the Taraba State Task Force so it can effectively carry out its mandate; provision of safe spaces and shelters; vocational and formal training opportunities for victims of human trafficking,” she adds.
Governor of the state, Darius Ishaku, assured the agency of robust collaboration and support to eliminate the menace of human trafficking in the state and by extension the country.
He said the state government frowns at the” actions of some immoral, indecent people whose business is to aggravate human suffering through human trafficking. It has therefore become very expedient as a government to demonstrate our resolve to stamp out this deadliest evil against humanity.”
Represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Anthony Jellason, Ishaku said “The inauguration of the Taraba State Task Force on Human Trafficking is a direct affront to eradicate a trade that is slowly emerging in the State.”
Source: The Guardian