President Muhammadu Buhari has said that his administration had so far secured 359 convictions against human traffickers.
Speaking at the 6th INTERPOL global conference on human trafficking and migrant smuggling in Abuja on Monday, the President stated that Nigeria was one of the first countries to implement the United Nations resolution on human trafficking.
Buhari, who was represented by Permanent Secretary in the office of the Secretary to Government of the Federation, Olusegun Adekunle, called for more collaborative efforts against human traffickers, noting that member states should go beyond rescuing victims by arresting and prosecuting traffickers.
According to him, “Unless we fight corruption in developing economies like ours, the little resources budgeted for development will be stolen by a few elite, exposing our youth to poverty, and thus becoming vulnerable to trafficking and smuggling.”
Also speaking at the conference, the Secretary-General of INTERPOL, Jurgen Stock noted that Nigeria and about 70 countries had decided to forge a common front against the complex international groups behind human trafficking and migrant smuggling.
He said, “With more than 500 specialists from law enforcement, the public and private sectors, non-governmental and international organisations, the two-day event will provide a global view on current threats and trace the financial flows behind the crimes, the crucial role of cross-sector partnerships, how to overcome obstacles to prosecution, and the use of technology and data in investigations.”
The Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, called for more international funding to tackle the human trafficking menace in the country.