Human Trafficking: UNODC trains 120 NAPTIP, NIS staff on data collection, analysis

By Rosemary Ogbonnaya

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, UNODC, with funding from the Government of Canada, is currently training no less than 120
staff of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking Persons and Nigeria Immigration Service, NIS to Combat Trafficking Persons and Smuggling of Migrants with Data Collection and Analysis.

The training, according to UNODC, would help in finding solution to some critical issues such as what are the prevalent forms of trafficking and are they evolving? Who are the victims and where are they from? Are women and girls more affected? And how do traffickers operate?, Saying that this will give a better understanding trafficking in persons and how to prevent and combat the crime.

In order to ensure sustainability and ownership by NAPTIP and NIS, the six trainings conducted in the six geopolitical zones of the country are facilitated by NAPTIP and NIS officers who benefited from a training of trainers in June 2021.

Following the methodology of UNODC Global Report on Trafficking in Persons and UNODC Observatory on Smuggling of Migrants, the training focuses on data collection paying attention to tracking and mapping offenses, profiles of victims and migrants, perpetrator backgrounds and forms of exploitation, and communicates best practices on data collection and analysis.

Nigerian Pilot gathered that training sessions already took place in Enugu for NAPTIP and NIS officers based in South-East states, as well as in Osogbo (South-West). This week’s session is taking place in Benin City (South-South), and benefits only NAPTIP and NIS officers but also members of the Edo State Taskforce Against Human Trafficking.

A statement obtained from UNODC Office, Nigeria said three more sessions are planned in the upcoming weeks in Makurdi (North Central), Maiduguri (North East) and Kano (North West).

During the training, the Governor of Edo state, Godwin Obaseki, who was represented by the Head of Service, Mr. Anthony Osas Okungbowa emphasised that following the establishment of the Edo State Task force Against Human Trafficking, the state government has gathered data of over 5000 returned migrants in its database which covers biodata, personal experiences and details of traffickers but there was need to further gather and use data.

In his keynote speech, the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Edo state, Mr. Oluwole Iyamu SAN underscored that “When law enforcements understand analysis, they can narrow it further and use it to predict when and where certain types of crime are most likely to occur and the general responses to such crimes. Advanced data analysis permits to institute preventative measures resulting in reduction of crimes which are prevalent in particular areas of Edo State.”

In his goodwill address, NAPTIP South South Regional Director, Mr. Effeh Ekrika, stated that “this training is apt and strategic as officers will be very well equipped to provide evidence-based response to trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants. I call on all participants to show commitment in of the importance that the agency attaches to the training.”