The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) has said that over 5,000 Nigerian girls are currently in different parts of Mali forced into prostitution by their traffickers.
The agency stated that the girls were forced into prostitution by their traffickers, who had “promised of helping them to Europe.”
The agency further added that it has commenced investigation into the trafficking into Mali of 37 female Nigerians who were on Monday deported to Nigeria by the Malian authorities.
The director-general of NAPTIP, Mr Abdulrazak Dangiri in a statement yesterday directed that the investigation on the trafficking of the 37 girls must be thorough, adding that sloppiness would not be condoned.
While interacting with the top management of the agency on the Malian case, he stated that “While the victims are being counseled by NAPTIP Counselors, the suspects are in NAPTIP custody and making useful statements.”
He added: “Investigations into the matter commenced before the deportation as investigators from the Agency who are also members of the Joint Border Task Force (JBTF) had as soon as the Malian authorities reached the agency through the National Crime Agency of the United Kingdom gone to Mali to profile, debrief and interview the victims and suspects preparatory to their return.
“The invitation of the NAPTIP-JBTF team was necessitated by the need to bring to bear the Nigerian experience on handling human trafficking cases; in identifying and to substantiate points to prove acts of human trafficking in the Malian case”.