As the world marked International Day Against Human Trafficking, the House of Representatives’ Committee on Diaspora Affairs, has said that effective partnership among all tiers of governments, especially wives of state governors and other relevant stakeholders will enhance Nigeria’s fight against human trafficking.
This was made known on Thursday by the chairman of the Committee, Hon. (Mrs) Tolulope Akande-Sadipe, in an interview with newsmen, as part of activities marking the 2020 World Day Against Trafficking Persons.
Expressing grave worry over the high level of trafficking in persons in the country, Akande Sadipe invited governors’ wives in the country to rise against this and other vices against females.
She said, “This is another form of violence against women. The best way to eradicate this evil among us is to work in unity. Wives of governors should use their offices to advocate against this act.
“The traficking agents and their collaborators are not more powerful than those who mean well for the people of this nation”.
Hon. Akande-Sadipe revealed that her recent meeting with the wife of Ogun State governor, Mrs. Bamidele Abiodun, which she said yielded positive enthusiasm showes that there could be fruitful collaborations with wives of governors to bring this embarrassing scourge to an end.
She added, “This action will ensure that we build awareness in our various states. We need to educate parents and our girls on the risk of foreign domestic servitude and the lies of agents who end up trafficking them into dangerous situations.
“We would ensure that the collaboration focuses on rehabilitation, engaging effective sensitisation, workshops and seminars across communities, schools, churches, mosques markets, and other public places, to the remotest parts of our nation.”
Expressing appreciation the Nigerian ambassador to Lebanon, Ambassador Goni Modu Zanna Bura, for graciously coming to the aid of Nigerian girls, who were forcefully ejected by their landlords, Hon Akade-Sadipe said, “I spoke to the Nigerian Ambassador in Lebanon yesterday and his response was inspiring as he had put in place some emergency palliatives for the girls in Lebanon.
“We also want to encourage the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs, and the ministries of Women Affairs in each state; women departments at the local government authorities, relevant government agencies and other stakeholders to partner with us, so that this trafficking menace would be a thing of the past.”
She reiterated her commitment to ensuring legislation to discourage human trafficking; even as she is working auspiciously with the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, NIDCOM, and the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, NAPTIP.
World Day Against Trafficking in Persons is held annually on July 30. Trafficking in persons and modern day slavery is recognized by the United Nations, UN, as a massive worldwide problem with very few countries immune to human trafficking.
Reports revealed about 80,000 Nigerians are currently held as sex slaves and in forced labour across the world, in countries like Lebanon, Mali and the Middle East.