Former UN special rapporteur wants to end human trafficking and irregular migration

A former United Nations Special Rapporteur, Professor Joy Ezeilo, has urged an end to human trafficking and unsafe migration to prevent Nigerian women from suffering abuse.

Ms. Ezeilo, a senior lawyer from Nigeria, made the call in a statement on Monday in Enugu while reacting to the viral video of young Nigerian girls being trafficked into forced prostitution in Ghana.

She attributed the factors fueling human trafficking to economic challenges, migrant smuggling, unsafe migration and “japa” syndrome.

According to her, watching the trending video of young Nigerian girls being trafficked into forced prostitution to neighboring Ghana is a stark reminder of the pervasive and cross-border problem of human trafficking or human trafficking.

She observed that in Africa, one in four trafficked people was a Nigerian, making it the country most affected by trafficking.

“This problem remains prevalent across all 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Edo State was once considered the epicenter of human trafficking, but this 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 tenure as United Nations Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children, from 2008 to 2014, I met Nigerians being trafficked or living as irregular migrants in nearly 100 countries that I “I visited as part of my global missions,” Ms. Ezeilo said.

She added that the main reasons for this trend were increasing poverty, unemployment, inequality, gender-based violence, lack of access to education, ignorance, conflict and displacement.

The founder of Women Aid Collective highlighted that the most common form of human trafficking was sexual exploitation, accounting for 79 percent of cases, with girls being the most common victims of sexual exploitation.

“I strongly urge government at all levels to implement urgent measures to address the root causes, particularly to reduce the vulnerabilities of young girls. It is important to put in place early warning mechanisms to identify cases where girls disappear from school, fail to enroll in school, or live outside of family care. Furthermore, we must address unsuitable working environments that increase the vulnerability of women and children to trafficking,” she said.

These situations, she explained, included girls working as waitresses in restaurants, hotels and brothels while under the age of 18 or when working as apprentices in job-specific jobs and environments. high risk.

He said: “End human trafficking and dangerous migration now. End impunity for traffickers through effective prosecutions and sanctions. Join NAPTIP and others, including WACOL, to eradicate human trafficking and unsafe migration in Nigeria.