Chinedu Adonu – Enugu
The Enugu State Police Command said on Friday that nine children have been rescued from two suspected child traffickers who specialised in moving children from Plateau to River State.
The state Commissioner of Police, Ahmed Abdulrahman, who paraded the suspects, said they were intercepted on January 4 while trafficking nine children in a luxury bus coming from the Northern part of the country.
Abdulrahman said the duo were intercepted at Orba Check-point in Udenu local government area of the state by army troops on “Operation Atilogwu Udo 1’’ exercise.
The police commissioner 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.
According to him, one of the suspects was one Mrs. Rebecca Nwachi, who was moving with the children on the luxury bus before the interception was made.
He said: “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 the police officers are still tracking the end receiver of the trafficked children, one “Blessing’’ who allegedly runs an orphanage home in Port Harcourt, River State.
Abdulrahman added: “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.”