The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) on Tuesday opened a three-day workshop in Abuja for its investigators as part of measures to combat trafficking in persons in Nigeria.
The investigators were drawn from NAPTIP, including its zonal offices across the country, to gain wider knowledge that would capture all the strategies and methods used by perpetrators of the heinous crime.
The training was supported by International and Ibero-America Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP), a Spanish public foundation implementing Action Against Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants (A-TIPSOM) project in Nigeria.
The Director-General of NAPTIP, Dame Julie Okah-Donli, while declaring the workshop open stated that the training of officers was necessary to explore all the details of the crime.
She said “the purpose of investigation is to explore, in details, the evidence in-depth, and to determine specifically whether a crime has been committed or not, and if so, identify the nature of the crime and the person responsible.
“Investigation is necessary to tackle trafficking in persons’ cases.
“As a matter of fact, Human Trafficking investigation is an unequivocal obligation under the United Nations’ Convention on Transnational Organized Crime 2001.
“The fulcrum of thorough and exhaustive investigation is to prevent similar abuses from happening again.”
The DG said that the training was also to brainstorm on the menace, currently referred to as modern day slavery.
She explained that NAPTIP, from its inception till date, had been taking the bull by the horns to identify perpetrators of Human Trafficking, while also rescuing, rehabilitating and empowering victims.
She noted that the agency partnered various stakeholders to advance the fight against Human Trafficking and had recorded outstanding successes in various areas.
She said that some of the NAPTIP partners built the capacity of staff members, while others donated items to victims of Human Trafficking in NAPTIP shelters.
She reiterated the agency’s commitment to continue to collaborate with stakeholders to combat trafficking and liberate the vulnerable from exploitation.
Mr Rafael-Rios Molina, the A-TIPSOM Team Leader in Nigeria, said the foundation would continue to support NAPTIP in whatever capacity within its jurisdiction.
Molina said that A-TIPSOM would continue to assist NAPTIP in the area of policy, prevention, protection and to enhance its role in the battle against trafficking.
He commended the NAPTIP boss “for putting up her best with the determination to end the scourge of trafficking in Nigeria.”
Mr Lorenzo Fages, the Attaché, Ministry of Interior, Spanish Embassy, said that Nigeria was the only country in Africa which stepped up the fight against Human Trafficking.
According to Fages, his country had a good relationship with Nigeria and would continue to support the country in the fight against Human Trafficking.
He added that “Human Trafficking is an international phenomenon. In Spain, we are against illegal marriage and consider it as trafficking in humans because traffickers use different methods to get their victims.
“We will continue to support NAPTIP with logistics,” he reiterated.