UNHCR Harps on Inter Agencies Collaboration – Nigerian Observer
BENIN CITY- The need for collaborations amongst key government institutions, Civil Society Organisations and United Nations in sensitising the people against Human Trafficking as well as where Victims of Trafficking (VoTs) can receive assistance and access to Justice Services has been stressed.
The assertion was made during a One-Day 5km Sensitisation Road Walk organised by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), in partnership with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking In Persons (NAPTIP) in commemoration with this year’s “World Day Against Trafficking In Persons”, in Benin City.
Speaking with newsmen during the event tagged “Victims’ Voices Lead The Way”, the Associate Projects Officer, UNHCR, Unyime Johnson, said that according to reports, there is an increasing number of migrants desperate to leave the country by any means in order to escape dire socio-economic and security challenges in the country.
She added that most migrants bound for Europe owing to lack of information and misinformation by connection men (traffickers) have resorted to irregular migration and increase in trafficking cases as connection men takes advantage of their dire situation to lure them into facilitating their travels to Europe through North African countries of Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, and Libya.
“Our mandate is to protect victims of Trafficking especially those needing international protections. The work we are doing in Benin City which has to do with information campaign about telling the real story.
“Although the Federal Governmental has put in measures to counter trafficking in persons, Nigeria remains a country of origin, transit, and destination for human trafficking.
“Driven by the demand for cheap labour and commercial sex, trafficking rings across borders and within countries capitalize on economic, social and political vulnerabilities to exploit their victims.
“Objectives of the event is to raise awareness about human trafficking including where victims can seek help in Edo State and to promote social cohesion and address challenges facing Victims of Trafficking”, she disclosed.
Speaking also, Senior Project Assistant, International Organisation For Migration (IOM), Aigbeze Uhimwen, said that voices of victims of human trafficking is paramount to IOM.
“We have set up a legal hub in collaboration with stakeholders including NAPTIP, Edo Task Force Against Trafficking In Persons and Ministry of Justice and we are committed to providing safe migration in Nigeria.
“So, the war against trafficking in persons is gaining momentum and with these actors, we believe that the statistics particularly reflecting Edo would have come down drastically.
“We are making significant progress in the fight against human trafficking and we encourage all stakeholders to join the fight against human trafficking so that we can do more”, he said.
On her part, the Benin Zonal Commands of NAPTIP, Barr. (Mrs.), Chidiebere Oruruo-Ifedu, said that her agency is at the forefront in the fight against human trafficking in Africa.
“Today, the whole world is celebrating the fight against human trafficking and in our continent, NAPTIP is the focal agency that fight human trafficking. We are saying no to human trafficking”, she remarked
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