By Gabriel Enogholase
BENIN—FORMER Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs. Josephine Anenih, has decried the alarming rate at which young girls and women are being trafficked overseas for prostitution and other vices and called on stakeholders to ensure that drastic steps are taken to end the scourge.
She made the call yesterday in Benin City, at a seminar organised by the African Bar Association, AFBA, with the theme: The Migration and Trafficking of Nigerian Women and Girls to Foreign Land: Addressing the Legal, Economic and Social -Cultural Issues.
Other speakers at the seminar, including Justice Pat Courage – Ogbebor, who was chairman of the occasion, Mrs Grace Osakwe, National Coordinator (Girls Power Initiatives),lamented the evil of human trafficking in Nigeria, particularly, in Edo State and its attendant consequences on family values and the society.
Mrs Anenih said the essence of the seminar was to bring together independent legal professional bodies and lawyers from various regions of Africa to exchange opinions and experiences in a friendly, informal and intimate atmosphere for the pursuit and achievements of varying but common professional aims.
She said: “The subject of trafficking in persons in Nigeria has been on the front burner for years, and government and individual associations have been fighting it with some degree of success.
“The awareness of the menace that the Godwin Obaseki-led government in Edo State has created, and the positive action taken to curb it, has been unprecedented.”
She paid tributes to the Oba of Benin, Oba Ewuare II,the Attorney General of Edo State, Prof. Yinka Omorogbe, FIDA boss, Mrs Maria Edeko and many other stakeholders and individuals, groups in the state who had contributed in one way and the other in the fight against human trafficking.