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NAPTIP arrests 116 human traffickers, rescues 1,489 victims in 4 years

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The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) on Thursday said the agency apprehended no fewer than 116 human traffickers and rescued 1,489 victims in four years.

The Zonal Commander in charge of Kano, Mr Shehu Umar, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kano.

Umar said that the command received 1,516 cases which involved 1,014 human trafficking acts both internal and external.

He added that the cases included 117 child abuse, 75 child labour, 109 sexual abuse, 13 rape cases and 188 other cases on Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP Act) from 2016 to July 2020, including 473 males and 1,028 females.

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The commander added that “the command arrested 91 male suspects, 25 female suspects, rescued 1,022 females, 467 male victims between the ages of six to 25-years-old within the period under review.

“We still have nine pending cases, eight in Federal High Court, one in Appeal Court, six new cases to be filed and secured 20 convictions from 2016 till date.”

He explained that the command had also rescued 107 human trafficking victims at the Malam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA) as their sponsors tried to flee
with them out of the country for greener pasture, aged between six and 32 years old.

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He said that of the 107 rescued victims, five from the Niger Republic and one from Ghana.

Umar further revealed that the command received 8,777 deportees that arrived in Kano through the MAKIA, which included 3,708 males and 5,069 females.

He explained that the agency’s public enlightenment department carried out 278 sensitisation and lecture programmes, including radio and television programmes.

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He urged the government and relevant stakeholders to provide NAPTIP with more operational vehicles, investigation equipment such as camera and walkie-talkie, with adequate funding.

He said “I believe that with more funds, we would do better, we need to move from analogue to digital system of operation to improve our investigation capabilities.

“We are facing the problems of inadequate data on human trafficking issues, many rape victims do not report cases and absence of officers of the command at airports
and borders,” Umar said.

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