The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons has reiterated its commitment to strengthen partnership with International Police and Immigration Liaison Officers to combat human trafficking.
Dame Julie Okah-Donli, the Director General of NAPTIP gave the assurance at an interactive meeting with the Police and Immigration Liaison Officers of Foreign Embassies in Nigeria with the agency’s operatives on Thursday in Abuja.
Okah-Donli said the meeting was predicated on the need to achieve International cooperation and effective collaboration through the instrumentalities of intelligence sharing, exchange of information, International good practices, joint technical cooperation, agreements and Memorandum of Understanding.
Represented by Opotu Abdulraheem, Director Legal and Prosecution Department of NAPTIP, Okah-Donli emphasised that trafficking in persons remained a global phenomenon with dire consequences for source, transit and destination countries of the world.
According to her, the scourge must be tackled head-on through our collective efforts as no single institutions or nation has the capacity to eradicate this menace.
She said: “The agency has worked assiduously to deliberately establish partnership for enforcing International cooperation with source, transit and destination countries to share information, intelligence and best practices to help improve the capacity to tackle this global scourge.
“The gathering offers a rare opportunity to appraise our collaborative efforts, the gains we may have recorded since our last meeting and the bold strides we need to take moving forward.”
Okah-Donli who commended participant at the maiden edition of the meeting held last December specifically noted the agency through such collaboration has witnessed significant response in exchange of information and sharing of intelligence.
She urged them to focus attention on victims identification and rescue as well as identification and handing over of the perpetrators of the heinous crime of Trafficking in Persons for appropriate investigation and prosecutorial response.
Similarly, Lewis Evans, First Secretary Justice and Home Affairs, British High Commission, described human trafficking as a major issue in Nigeria.
Evans emphasised that collaborative efforts of NAPTIP and other all countries was significant in fighting the scourge.
The News Agency of Nigeria report that participants at the meeting were drawn from USA, Finland, France, Italy, Britain, Norway, Niger, Bulgaria, Belgium, Turkey, Togo, Egypt, Cameroon, Spain among others.