National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons says it will collaborate with Bayelsa State Government and other relevant agencies to combat human trafficking and other related offences in the state.
The Zonal Commander, NAPTIP, Benin Zonal Command, Mrs Ijeoma Uduak, stated this on Tuesday in Yenagoa, the state capital.
She paid a visit to the Secretary to the State Government, Department of State Services, Nigeria Immigration Service, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency and state Commissioner of Police.
Uduak said NAPTIP was ready to collaborate with the relevant stakeholders in order to reduce the rate of human trafficking, child labour, sexual exploitation and other related offences to the barest minimum in Bayelsa.
She stated, “As we all know, NAPTIP is a focal agency of the Federal Government saddled with the responsibilities of coordinating all trafficking in persons’ law, arrest and prosecution of offenders.
“We also rehabilitate victims and prevent occurrences through sensitisation and partnership for the betterment of the society.
“We are more determined for synergy and collaboration in order to collectively eradicate these heinous crimes across the board.”
Also speaking on the occasion, Secretary to the Bayelsa State Government, Mr Kombowei Benson, said the issue of trafficking and rape had been a common menace the government had been trying to stop.
The SSG stated, “There have been talkshows on the radio, TV and social media. So much steps must be taken to curb the situation. As a government, we must ensure that such activities where you see young girls being raped and molested by adults do not take place in the state. They have to things of the past.
“Information must be given to be able to reduce the issue of rape, trafficking and child abuse in the whole country.”
The Acting State Director of DSS, Mr Mike Obaje, commended NAPTIP for the synergy with security agencies in Bayelsa.
He said child trafficking, rape, and abuse had in recent times been on the increase in Nigeria.
He said, “Rape is becoming a serious concern for the citizenry as the menace is now common in all parts of the country.
“NAPTIP should endeavour to organise an enlightenment programme for the public to be aware of the antics of those trafficking and other related matters.”
The Commander, NDLEA, Mr Kupi Maulsei, said he was ready to partner with NAPTIP to curb human trafficking and other related matters in the state.
He urged them to be more serious this time around as the crime of trafficking and rape was currently rising in Nigeria.
On his part, the Commissioner of Police, Bayelsa State Command, Nkereuwem Akpan, acknowledged the NAPTIP team for the good work they had been doing and promised to work in synergy with them.
He promised to always assist the organisation in any way he could to eradicate trafficking, rape and other abuses in Bayelsa.
The police commissioner said that the command would also assist in intelligence gathering, noting that drug is one of the main issues that lead young people to abuse and rape girls and women.
Akpan called on parents to caution their children on the kind of friends they keep to avoid becoming a threat to the society.