The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons secured 10 convictions against offenders and rescued 100 victims of human trafficking in Sokoto Zonal command in 2017, an official said.
The Zonal Commander in charge of Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara States, Hassan Tahir, made the disclosure in Sokoto on Thursday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria.
Tahir said the offences bordered on human trafficking, child labour and sexual exploitation.
He said that convicted persons received various sentences ranging from four years to seven years imprisonments.
Tahir expressed optimism that the punishments would serve as deterrent to others, adding that some cases were still pending in the courts.
He said the agency received about 150 cases within the period, stressing that efforts were geared towards enforcement of the agency’s mandates on prevention, protection, prosecution and partnerships of illegal human trafficking and related offences.
The zonal commander said the agency had a counseling and rehabilitation center where victims were being rehabilitated before going back to their communities.
He said: “We have shelter where victims of child labour, trafficking and sexual abuses are being taken care of.’’
He said in 2017, about 20 girls were rescued from Zamfara in collaboration with Kebbi and Niger State Governments from some human traffickers.
Tahir said that the agency was carrying out community sensitisation campaigns in the markets, garages, schools and other public places against menace of child labour, trafficking and other abuses.
He said: “We accept and treat cases and on investigation, when we discover the case was not part of our mandate, we transfer it to statutory government agencies and we also receive same from them.’’
The commander said that NAPTIP enjoyed cordial working relationship with sister agencies and state governments and promised increased commitment to efforts aimed at reducing child labour, sexual abuse, trafficking and other offences.