Mrs. Fatima Waziri, the Director-General of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), announced that the agency has achieved 631 convictions since its inception. Speaking during a workshop for Public Relations Officers (PROs) and Public Enlightenment Officers (PEO) in Lagos, Waziri highlighted that the number of convictions in 2022 was the highest recorded since the agency’s establishment.
“In 2022, we secured 80 convictions, the highest since our inception. As of today, 2023, we have secured 55 convictions and are still counting,” Waziri stated. She noted a significant accomplishment in extraditing a high-profile human trafficker to Italy for a 13-year sentence, achieved through collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Justice, Department of State Security, Interpol, and the Nigerian judiciary.
Waziri highlighted another achievement, securing the conviction of a high-profile criminal based in Belgium, responsible for trafficking girls across Europe. This individual received a 12-year prison sentence and a fine of N24 million.
The Director-General emphasised that these convictions send a strong message to human traffickers and serve as a deterrent to potential offenders. She mentioned that NAPTIP has successfully rescued over 22,000 victims, demonstrating the agency’s commitment to combating human trafficking. In terms of rehabilitation, Waziri noted that NAPTIP has supported approximately 20 victims up to the university level, with some former victims now employed by the agency.
Waziri appealed to all Nigerians to support the agency in eradicating the menace of human trafficking. She encouraged citizens to report any suspicious activities related to human trafficking, educate themselves about the issue, and be aware of red flags. The Director-General provided contact information, including a 24-hour call centre, toll-free line (07030000203), short code 67 on the MTN network, and social media handles (naptipnigeria on Facebook, X, and Instagram) for reporting and information.
Waziri urged those with extra time or resources to support organizations working against human trafficking and violence against individuals.