The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), on Wednesday, arrested eight under-age girls for allegedly contravening section 17 of the Agency’s Act.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Benin, reports that the arrest was made by the Benin Zonal Command of the agency, comprising Edo and Delta states.
The arrest of the under-aged girls followed a raid on two brothels in the Aduwawa axis of the state by the agency’s investigators, in partnership with men of the Edo Command of the Department of State Service (DSS).
Mrs Chidiebere Oruruo-Ifudu, Zonal Commander in charge of the zone, addressing newsmen after the exercise, said that the agency got a tip-off from an informant last week, about some young girls being used as prostitutes in a brothel.
“So, in the early hours of today, NAPTIP in company of the DSS, raided the brothel.”
“We didn’t just raid only one brothel but two, and we were able to rescue these young girls that have been forced into prostitution”, she said.
She said that investigations had commenced and they would be charged to court in due course, adding that 32 persons, comprising 25 females and five males, including the hotel managers and security men, were actually arrested during the raid.
“However, we have no business with the others who are above 18 years of age.”
“We are interested in those below 18, because right now section 17 of the Trafficking in Persons Prohibition Law Enforcement 2015 Act has been contravened. And that is what we are using to charge them to court”, Oruruo-Ifudu said.
The zonal commander, while advising youths to try and acquire skills aside education, disclosed that six of the rescued victims had already indicated interest to key into the skills acquisition training of the agency.
She explained that upon completion of the training after six months, they would be empowered.
Oruruo-Ifudu also advised parents to always look out for their children, while reiterating the zone’s commitment to continue to work in tandem with Dr Fatima Waziri-Hazi, Director General, NAPTIP’s, agenda for the agency.