By Chinedu Adonu
The police command in Enugu state said they have rescued nine kids from two suspected child traffickers who specialize in moving children from Plateau State in North Central zone to River State in South-South zone.
Parading the two suspects in Enugu, the state Commissioner of Police, Mr Ahmed Abdurrahman, said that the suspects were intercepted trafficking nine children on Jan. 4 in a luxury bus coming from the Northern part of the country.
Abdurrahman said that they were intercepted at Orba Check-point in Udenu council area of the state by army troops on “Operation Atilogwu Udo 1’’ exercise then.
He noted that the army authorities, however, handed over the victims [children] and suspects to the command for further investigation.
According to him, a total of nine children, including four girls and five boys aged between two and 13 years, were recovered from the suspected child traffickers.
He gave the name of the child trafficker as Mrs Rebecca Nwachi, 40, who hails from Ebonyi State, moving with the children in the luxury bus before the interception was made.
“We also have another suspect, Pastor Isaac David, who arranges the children being trafficked for Nwachi from Barkin Ladi council area in Plateau State.
The commissioner, however, said that the police was still tracking the end receiver of the trafficked children, one “Blessing’’ who allegedly runs an orphanage home in Port Harcourt, River State.
“This is a type of organised crime where children are trafficked from the Northern part of the country to the South-East and South-South.
“This syndicate runs their illegal business using orphanage as a cover-up. We have reached and contacted the parents of the trafficked children and some said that they gave their children to the pastor on condition that he will provide better welfare and education for them.
“Some other parents said that they did not know when their children moved out of their homes and they have declared them missing for some time now. While at the end receiver’s point, only God knows what these children are used for; some might be used as sacrificial lambs, child labour; and others subjected to a lot of criminal activities.
“Parents especially people in Plateau State should be wary of the whereabouts of their children. Parents should endeavor to take care of their children themselves,’’ he advised.
The commissioner said that the children would be handed over to their parents after investigation on the matter.
“I personally appreciate our sister security agencies especially the Nigerian Army that made this arrest possible,’’ he added.