By Dapo Akinrefon
The Director-General of National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, NAPTIP, Ms. Julie Okah-Donli, has appealed to the Federal Government and corporate bodies to assist in funding the agency.
The NAPTIP boss made the appeal in Lagos when she paid a courtesy visit on Executive Secretary, Nigeria National Summit Group, Mr. Tony Uranta, urging him to use his influence locally and internationally to rally support for the agency, especially with a view to helping it with food, drugs and other basic necessities for their shelter homes.
According to her, the scope of its operations has broadened, hence the need for adequate funding to achieve its mandate.
She said: “Trafficking in person has gone beyond sexual exploitation and domestic servitude; it has now extended to organ harvesting. These days, they kill people and sell their organs. They believe it is easier for them to get money that way than to start waiting for a prostitute to bring returns. So, it has taken a frightening and scary dimension.”
In his response, Uranta, who was a member of the Presidential Advisory Committee on National Dialogue during the past administration of President Goodluck Jonathan, commended the leadership of the agency, stating that there is need for NAPTIP to improve its advocacy.
He added that he has been concerned about the issue and threat for over 10 years. Uranta called on government and the National Assembly to increase the budgetary allocation of the agency, stressing that he will mobilise major actors and stakeholders in the nation and the corporate world to commit to the burden of human trafficking.