Focus On Human Trafficking In Nigeria
By Jude Chukwuemeka
•Daniel Atokolo - South West Zonal Coordinator @naptipnigeria.
•Enitan Ibironke - Media Liaison Officer, The Migrant Project Nigeria.
Wemimo Adewuni is back on Morning Crossfire! Together with Sheriff Quadry, the duo beams attention on human trafficking issue in Nigeria and the consequences of the business model.
Nigerians suffer in their thousands when they leave the shores of Nigeria. The federal and state governments are ready to help these ones who are trafficked, many of them young people. Will they accept help?
They start with the following brief: Research has shown, that Nigeria is routinely listed as one of the countries with the largest number of trafficked victims overseas (particularly in Europe), with victims identified in 34 countries in four regions in 2018.
In 2019 alone, about 4,541 Nigerian girls within the age bracket of 18 years to 30 years, were trafficked to Lebanon by recruiting agents from Nigeria. So far, about 1,000 Nigerian girls have been rescued by the Federal government.
Enitan Ibironke, responding to the issue of trafficking, says that human trafficking itself is a business model. “But what pushes it? What are the factors? Sometimes, you don’t find some opportunities where you live unless you go somewhere. But when you think about goods, that’s different because they are being moved. When it comes to humans, they are being trafficked in the sense that there’s an element of coercion.
“As you’ve heard, sometimes, when you take children off the street, they are often taken back to the streets by their parents.”
Wemimo adds that there seems to be nothing wrong with looking for greener pastures but for an irregular migrant, what is the problem with seeking greener pastures?
Ibironke agrees and says that seeking for greener pastures is in itself not itself the challenge. “The challenge is what are the factors that make people seek for greener pastures? Lack of economic opportunities, lack of opportunity for one to express the kind of live one wants. There’s greed, there’s ignorance. Some may be struggling to earn something. Irregular migrants are those who leave the country with a methodology that is irregular. These are people who don’t go through embassies.”
Talking more about the illegal part of it, Daniel Atokolo comments that there is nothing wrong with migration.
“But it becomes a problem when it is irregular. Most people who are trafficked doesn’t have enough information that they need to complete that journey successfully. Human trafficking is accomplished through deceit. Those who aid them only care about how to exploit them.
“If you have your papers and you travel in the orderly manner, when you get to that country you can easily find law enforcement agents when you have problems. These people who are trafficked collude with agents and traffickers because they believe that when they get there, things will be better.
“Most people we intercept always think that we are their enemies. It is only when they get there and face problems then they cry out to us.
“The federal government have intervention for young people but they don’t have the patience to work it out. When we intercept them, they tell us all manners of lies. I want Nigerians to know this now. There is no place on earth where you’re going to pick dollars or pound sterling on the ground. Nigeria is supposed to be a better destination than the places these people go to.”
Two young ladies: Omolola Ajayi and Gloria Bright were reportedly whisked away under false pretence to work as slaves in foreign countries, under horrendous conditions.
Recently, the two young women who were trafficked to Lebanon have been rescued.
National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons has been active in the rescue of victims.
Contact @naptipnigeria Lagos Zonal on: 07080601801
Click the video above to listen to other angles to the human trafficking issues in Nigeria and why you should not be part of the story if you have been planning to be an irregular migrant.
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