MEETING WITH CIVIL SOCIETY_UN SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR (MARIA GRAZIA GIAMMARINARO) ON TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS AT THE NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHT COMMISSION, ABUJA ON THE 3RD DAY OF SEPTEMBER, 2018.
HUMAN TRAFFICKING: CHALLENGES AND RECOMMENDATIONS.
WE CAN ONLY SAY GOODBYE TO THE SCOURGE OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING IN NIGERIA IF WE ALL JOIN HANDS TO FIGHT IT THE SAME WAY EBOLA WAS FOUGHT.
Article 3, paragraph (a) of the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons defines Trafficking in Persons as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion , of abduction, of fraud ,of deception , of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person , for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices related to slavery, servitude of the removal of organs.
The fight to end Human Trafficking has been on for a longtime, there are however certain challenges affecting this fight to bring an end to this menace as discussed by civil societies. They include:
- SECURITY: The effect and consequences helps in fostering Human Trafficking. When there is insecurity, people tend to flee from that particular environment, and in most cases, they become displaced and tend to fall in the hands of traffickers who take advantage of the situation.
- No adequate data and monitoring system for trafficked victims.
- Agro-ecology: Human Displacement.
- Lack of Social Protection.
- Poverty: This is one of the main reasons people become victims of human trafficking. Search for better standard of living exposes people to traffickers.
- Ignorance: People, especially those in the rural areas, do not know their rights. They do not know the appropriate agencies to report to when approached by prospective traffickers. So many others do not even know the dangers of the menace and traffickers feed on the ignorance of victims.
- Fear: Victims do not openly speak out because of fear. Fear of retaliation by Traffickers, and also fear of the oath of secrecy they are forced to take.
Notwithstanding the challenges highlighted above, there is however a way forward. To put an end to issues of Human Trafficking, and ensuring it becomes history in Nigeria, the following recommendations are proffered.
- The study of Trafficking should be enshrined in our education curriculum.
- Civil Societies should collaborate/partner to bring an end to it. They should join hands together to fight human trafficking and not be in competition.
- More adequate shelters should be created for victims of human trafficking.
- Short term Skills should be provided for returnees and a proper monitoring and evaluation should be done.
- Civil Societies and Organizations should be specific on what they do, in order for the societies to know the aspect of human trafficking that is already covered.
- The government should hitherto involve itself in the fight against human trafficking. Trafficking should be involved in Political discussions. Any political aspirant who do not have an interest in policies relating to human trafficking should not be involved in government.