NAPTIP Engages Stakeholders to Combat Human Trafficking in Anambra

Chinwe Onuigbo, Awka

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The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has collaborated with stakeholders in Anambra State, Southeast Nigeria to devise strategies for tackling human trafficking. The initiative aimed to tackle the prevalent issue of human trafficking cases in both the state and the entire southeastern region.

Addressing the gathering, which was organised by NAPTIP in collaboration with Palladium International and the Network Against Child Trafficking, Abuse, and Labour (NACTAL), Honourable Ify Obinabo, the Commissioner for Women and Social Welfare in Anambra State, expressed concern about the region’s increasing child trafficking incidents.

“It was said that Anambra houses the largest market in West Africa. That will give you an insight into why the rush to the state. Everyone wants to partake in the supposed cash flow of the state, legally or otherwise.

“The traffickers will lure their victims with the impression they have solutions to all their problems. The gullible ones, who mostly are not from the state are trapped.

“Some of the victims would graduate to being recruited as traffickers themselves. They do not have mercy and conscience while luring their victims.

“Parents should be open to their children that these things exist. The church, traditional rulers, vigilantes and other stakeholders should join in advocacy, the Ministry of Women’s Affairs and NAPTIP can’t be everywhere.” 

She also appreciated NAPTIP for their wonderful collaboration with the ministry since the government of Professor Chukwuma Soludo came on board and assured of continued support even as she advised participants to always report any trafficking activities in their neighbourhood to the right authorities, for prompt intervention.

The Director General of NAPTIP, Professor Fatima Waziri-Azi, represented by the Director of training and Manpower Development of the agency, Mr Arinze Orakwue, said that the issues of child trafficking must be given the right attention, with recent statistics indicating a sharp increase in such cases noting that NAPTIP is committed to activating the lasting partnership with Anambra State and the south-east to eliminate the issues under review.

Professor Waziri-Azi also listed inadequate resources, lack of periodic intervention funds, limited support from states as well and the absence of a budget line for the implementation of the Violent Against Persons Prohibition VAPP, Act in the federal capital territory as challenges confronting the Agency.

Also speaking at the event, the National President of the Network Against Child Trafficking, Abuse and Labour NACTAL, Abdulganiyu Abubakar, urged parents to be vigilant and ensure the proper education of their children.

Speaking earlier, the Social Protection Advisor USAID SCALE project Barrister Eric Umoru narrated that the agency is taking every necessary step to check cases of trafficking in persons in the south-east urging participants to implement the knowledge gotten in the course of the interface, to help curb human trafficking.