By Lydia Ngwakwe
Lagos – The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has urged the three-tiers of government to provide social security for families with inadequate or no income to end to human trafficking.
Mr Daniel Atokolo, NAPTIP Zonal Commander for Lagos, Ogun and Oyo states, said this at a seminar to commemorate the United Nations International Day of Families.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the conference was organised by Women’s Board Educational Co-operation Society, an NGO, in collaboration with NAPTIP.
The theme for the conference is: “Effects of illegal Migration on Families and Societies’’.
Atokolo said: “Every human being has a family, human trafficking and illegal migration are two evils that arise from a family.
“It brings dislocation in a family, brings deprivation and crisis to the family, it is evil.
“Illegal migration is another evil and most of the time, illegal migration and human trafficking go hand-in-hand and linked to the extent that most of the people that go, especially across the border, go illegally.
“Girls are trafficked and used for domestic service, street trading and commercial sex exploitation.
“Boys are used for domestic service, forced to work on plantation, farm lands, and quarries and engaged in petty crime.
“Trafficking sometimes has the tacit collaboration of victims’ families and relatives.
“However, if every local and state government is doing what it should do for its community, particularly provision of social security, people would not leave their families in search of greener pastures.
“So, breakdown of social security is there and if trafficking must stop, government must be able to do its best for the people.’’
He, therefore, urged parents, especially fathers, not to push their children to modern day slavery just to achieve what they could not achieve at old age.
The Managing Director of My School Arena, Mrs Chinelo Ujubuonu, urged everyone to be mindful of the families so as not to lose the values it was built for.
“Without the family, there is no society and because there is no society without the family, the family is the bedrock of any society and everyone should be mindful about the family.
“Already, we have lost our value systems, as we can see it is quite eroding and that is because the family has not been taken care,’’ she said.
Mrs Bolanle Olumekan, representative of the Director, United Nations Information Centre, said it was time families began to take action and be aware of climate change and its devastating effects on development.
“The theme for this year’s International Day of Families is ‘Families and Climate Change’ and families must understand that there are many devastating things going on in terms of climate change.
“So it is important that families begin to take action about climate change, use clean energy and take care of the environment.
“Let’s avoid throwing things anyhow in drainage but try to play vital roles for the achievement of SDGs 1-5 and 16,’’ Olumekan said.
Earlier, the Director of Women’s Board urged government to create employment opportunities for youths to thrive, adding that no family would want their children to migrate illegally in search for greener pastures.
NAN reports that civil society organisations, NGOs, students, individuals and families attended the seminar.(NAN)