In a bid to positively address societal issues relating to women, with special attention to the girl child in Edo State, and in Nigeria generally, impacting meaningfully on their welfare and general wellbeing, and aiding the sustainable development of Nigeria, the Edo Women’s Development Initiative EWDI joins the rest of the world to mark the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons.
In a press statement made available to newsmen, Dr Rosaline Osemetiti Okosun, Chair, Edo Women’s Development Initiative EWDI said that “July 30th has been designated as World Day Against Traffic in Persons to honour all first responders helping to end trafficking: law enforcement officers, social workers, healthcare professionals, NGO’s and others working to protect the vulnerable and calling out for more bodies to join in this fight against trafficking in persons.
“Trafficking in persons is a heinous crime and a violation of human rights. Every year thousands of women and children fall prey to traffickers who exploit them within and outside of their countries.
“Trafficking for sexual exploitation is the largest form of trafficking while others include forced labour, forced begging, forced marriage, selling of children as well as removal of organs.
“The overwhelming majority of the victims of sexual exploitation are women and girls. Trafficking is a problem of global proportions, which robs victims of their basic human rights, including their right to freedom, their dignity, their right to live where they choose and the right to control their own bodies.
“The vulnerability of families, women and girls due to poverty and lack of opportunities is often the reason that they fall prey to unscrupulous criminals who traffic and exploit them. “Traffickers promise their victims a bright and better future away from their impoverished environment. However, all they do is to isolate and then exploit theim in the sex industry”, EWDI Chairperson, Dr. Rosaline Okosun stated.
“It has been estimated that every second an average of eight women, girls and often young boys, are trapped by international criminal networks where the sole aim is to trafic, enslave and sexually exploit them. The International Labour Organization (ILO) estimates that nearly a million people are trafficked every year for purposes of sexual exploitation and 98% of that number are women and girls.
“The victims rarely receive any of the huge sums of money generated by their exploitation. Human trafficking is therefore a modern form of slavery.
“EWDI hopes that authorities will support this year’s World Day Against Trafficking in persons and play a vital role in identifying, supporting, counselling and seeking justice for victims of trafficking and challenging the impunity of the traffickers in other to reduce and stop trafficking”. Dr Rosaline Okosun added.