Thirty-nine women suspected to be victims of human trafficking and illegal migration have been intercepted by the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Abuja.
Operatives of the Agency following a surveillance operation and intelligence gathering traced the suspects to a popular hotel located in the city and the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja where they were arrested.
Among those arrested in connection with the planned trafficking of the victims were two recruiters from a popular Labour Recruitment Travel and Tour Company located at Jabi area of Abuja, and a Clergy man from the Mosque were the victims were hidden in preparation for the journey.
The women are currently helping the Agency with useful information to aid further investigation.
The Director-General of NAPTIP, Dame Julie Okah–Donli, speaking on the development, said the raid was part of the efforts put in place to halt the illegal migration and trafficking of Nigerians and its attendant tragedies.
“The Agency is pained by the trafficking of our people by some unscrupulous persons under the disguise of getting them job outside the country.
“The last of such being the 26 girls that died under unclear circumstances enroute Europe.
“NAPTIP has decided, in addition to aggressive massive sensitization embarked upon in some of the identified endemic states and communities, to strengthen it surveillance team and inter – Agency cooperation in some of the entry and exit points so that we count rescue these victims before they are trafficked out for various purposes.
“Within the last few days, we have had consultations with Officials of some of the Embassies in Nigeria with a view to streamlining the issuance of Visa and other documents to applicants whose mission is suspicious.
“Efforts are also on-going to review the operational permits of some of the Labour Recruitment Companies as well as Travel and Tours Agents with a view to regulating their operations in such a way that it will not jeopardize the current effort by the Federal Government to fight human trafficking and illegal migration.
“Other members of these syndicates will be apprehended wherever they are hidden and would be made to face the wrath of the law” Okah – Donli said.