The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has diclosed that it rescued no fewer than 19 trafficking victims and arrested four human traffickers.
The body explained that the four suspected traffickers are males, while the rescued victims are females between the ages of 14 years and 29 years.
The NAPTIP Director-General, Basheer Garba-Mohammed, said that the feat was achieved after the agency received an intelligence report that the suspects harboured the victims in their house situated at Jigawa State before moving them in batches to Niger Republic.
Confirming the development on Monday while briefing newsmen, Mohammed who was represented by NAPTIP Kano Zonal Commander, Abdullahi Babale, said that the agency’s personnel in collaboration with the Nigeria Police Force rescued the victims.
“The agency received an intelligence report that the suspects harboured the victims in their house situated at Jigawa State before moving them in batches to Niger Republic.
“The victims were on transit from Ondo, Ekiti, Delta, Anambra, Edo, Osun, Kogi, Akwa Ibom, Kwara, Ogun and Lagos states enroute to Rivers, Oyo, Osun, Delta and Ogun States then to Euroupe via Libya.
“On receiving the information, a special operation was coordinated by NAPTIP Joint Border Task Force in collaboration with Katsina State Police Command and the 19 victims were rescued on Aug.18.’’
Garba-Mohammed also said that the agency rescued five victims of child labour and arrested two suspects. According to him, the victims are five females between the ages of 10 years and 11 years.
He said tbat on Aug.11, the agency received information that the victims were on transit from Bareruwan Daji Village in Katsina State enroute Kaduna via Kano.
“On receiving the information, a special operation was coordinated by the agency and the victims were rescued and two female suspects were arrested.’’
He called on parents to protect their children from being exploited and lured into slavery in the name of seeking greener pastures.
The director-general commended Katsina State Police Command for their support. “We will do all what we can to see that the menace of human trafficking and smuggling of migrants is brought to an end.’’ It would be recalled that the agency had on August 9, rescued 80 victims of human trafficking enroute Kano via Niger Republic to Europe.