29 C
New York
Sunday, June 23, 2024

UN rapporteur responds to trending video of girls trafficked for prostitution

Professor of Public Law and a six-year United Nations Special Rapporteur on Trafficking Persons in Africa, Joy Ezeilo, has expressed concerns about the trending photos and videos of Nigerian girls that were allegedly trafficked abroad for prostitution.

The teacher of Law states:

Watching the trending video of young Nigerian girls, mainly from Imo state, trafficked for forced prostitution to neighbouring Ghana is a stark reminder of the pervasive and cross-border issue of human trafficking or trafficking in persons (TiP).

In Africa, one in every four trafficked persons is Nigerian, making the country the most affected by trafficking.

This issue remains prevalent in all 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. The Edo state was once considered the epicenter of trafficking in persons (TiP), but that is no longer the case. Nigerian women, children, and men are vulnerable to transnational or cross-border human trafficking, primarily to Europe and Africa, as well as to other parts of the world, including Asia and the Americas. Human trafficking knows no borders.

During my time as the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, from 2008 to 2014, I encountered Nigerians who were trafficked or living as irregular migrants in nearly 100 countries I visited as part of my global assignment.

Also Read  Nigerian woman fatally shot in South Africa 

The main reasons for this trend include increasing poverty, unemployment, inequality, gender-based violence, lack of access to education, ignorance, conflicts, and displacement. The most widespread form of human trafficking is sexual exploitation, accounting for 79% of cases, with girls being the most common victims of sexual exploitation.

The current economic situation in Nigeria is fueling human trafficking, migrant smuggling, and unsafe migration, including the “Japa” syndrome.

I strongly urge the government at all levels to implement urgent measures to address the root causes, particularly to reduce the vulnerabilities of young girls. Establishing early warning mechanisms is important to identify when girls disappear from school, fail to enroll in school,  or live outside of family care.

Additionally, we need to address unsuitable working environments that increase the vulnerability of women and children to trafficking. This includes situations where girls work as waitresses in restaurants, hotels, and brothels while still under 18 years of age or when they work as apprentices in specific high-risk jobs and environments.

Also Read  Over 2,000 trafficked Nigerian girls currently stranded in Mali

End human trafficking and unsafe migration now. Stop the impunity of traffickers through effective prosecution and punishment. Join NAPTIP and other actors, including WACOL, to eradicate human trafficking and unsafe migration in Nigeria.

Bridget Benson
+ posts

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Stay Connected


Latest Articles