Oyo State Government has vowed to bring to book any culprit found culpable human trafficking in the state.
This came to the fore during a meeting between the State Government officials and Stakeholders in the Travels and Tours industry at the State Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism in Ibadan during the week.
The State Government condemned the spate of trafficking especially women and girl child, calling on parents, guardians, residents and its citizens to prioritize their values and desist from employing the services of visa fraudsters and traffickers in order to seek greener pastures.
The State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr. Toye Arulogun decried the increase in human trafficking and the attendant unholy acts of slavery and prostitution, assuring that the government will not negate its responsibility of protecting the citizens of the state.
He appealed to the governing body of National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies (NANTA) and National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) to collaborate with the State Government in apprehending travel agencies and individuals who engage in human trafficking.
Arulogun expressed government’s commitment to protecting the lives of its citizenry, noting, “the Oyo State Government has been inundated with series of complains from the citizens on how citizens of the state for prey to the antics of these human traffickers who promise greener pasture but turn their victims to slaves in the foreign land.
“These traffickers dangle juicy carrots of greener pastures at their would be victims but the victims end up coming back with harrowing experiences. We owe it to the people to protect them from unpleasant experiences and this is why we are calling on all stakeholders to see to the end of this unholy act. We urge the media to verify the success stories of these so called travel tours before airing their commercials to save a lot of innocent souls,” Arulogun explained.
In his own remarks, the Special Adviser to Governor Ajimobi on Community Relations, Mr. Abidemi Siyanbade said with the collaboration of NANTA and security agencies in the State, the State Government will soon curb the activities of fake travel agencies, who sell women and girls into slavery outside the country.
Speaking, the National Vice President, NANTA, Mr. Dagunduro Olatokunbo called for urgent action in sensitizing the populace about the dangers involved in such journeys to the diaspora.