The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons and Other Related Matters (NAPTIP) has said that trafficking in persons was the third most lucrative business in the world aside drug trafficking and armed smuggling.
Mr Silvester Atere, the Outreach and Communication Officer, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) disclosed this on Tuesday in Calabar at a Media Roundtable on Trafficking in Persons organised by the European Union (EU).
According to him, such business is inimical to the growth and development of the society.
Atere said that trafficking in persons debased the essence of humanity, and called on Nigerians to report any act of trafficking to the appropriate agencies of government.
He listed factors responsible for trafficking as poverty, the desire to earn a living, greed, ignorance, parental negligence among others.
Atere enumerated some of the things facilitating trafficking in persons to include denied freedom of movement, psychological abuse, gender division and unequal international economic relations.
Also speaking at the event, Mr Arinze Orakwe, the Director, Public Enlightenment, NAPTIP, observed that organ harvesting was partly responsible for increasing trafficking in persons in the country.
He said that the increasing rate of trafficking in persons as witnessed in some parts of the country in recent times was due to some desperate Nigerians in their quest to use human organ for ritual purpose.
Orakwe said that apart from that, Boko Haram also to perpetrate their heinous acts by using children for suicide mission.
According to him, the child suicide bombers used by Boko Haram to perpetrate their heinous crime is sequel to child trafficking by this gang of insurgents.
He decried the rate at which people now disappear in Ogun State, adding that the police was aware of this development and was working to curtail such dastardly act.
“The most dangerous place where people disappear now is Ogun State and the police know about this,’’ he said.
He said that although all the states in Nigeria were vulnerable to trafficking, 22 states were most vulnerable to trafficking in persons.
Orakwe said that if poverty was reduced and infrastructures available in the country, issues of trafficking in persons would be highly reduced.
He said that the proliferation of education agencies recruiting unsuspecting students for overseas admission because of failure in the education sector was also largely responsible for trafficking in Nigeria.