ABUJA, NIGERIA- Nigeria’s anti-trafficking agency, NAPTIP, has released its 2020 Report, highlighting its efforts in 2020 to combat human trafficking in all its forms in Nigeria.
Highlights include the following:
- NAPTIP received 1,032 cases for investigation, completed 251 investigations, prosecuted 69 cases (of the 239 received for legal opinion) and secured a total of 38 convictions. In addition, according to NAPTIP, 11 of the 38 convictions (29%) related to the procurement of persons for sexual exploitation, with 9 convictions (24%) relating to fraudulent entry of persons.
- Of the 251 investigated cases, 36.2% of those investigated (196 cases) related to the crime of foreign travel for prostitution, representing the largest category of reported cases (19% of cases reported). The second largest category of reported cases related to the procurement of persons for sexual exploitation (14.1% of cases reported, 146 cases), with child abuse cases following (11.4% of cases reported, 118 cases) and reflecting a stark increase from 2019 (when less than 40 cases were reported).
- Of the 733 arrests made, 32.7% (122) of them related to foreign travel which promotes prostitution offenses (78 men and 44 women).
- NAPTIP prosecuted a total of 69 cases of trafficking in 2020, although its Legal and Prosecution Department received a total of 236 on which to legally opine
- Of the prosecuted cases, NAPTIP reports a total of 38 convictions (up from 18 convictions in 2019), with a total of 51 convicted persons (30 men and 21 women). 15 of those convictions (39%) related to the procurement of persons for sexual exploitation, with only 2 convictions (.05%) relating to foreign travel which promotes prostitution.
- A total of 1,081 victims of trafficking (down from 1,152 in 2019) were rescued by varying law enforcement agencies/organizations in 2020. Of the total rescued victims, 399 were rescued by NAPTIP (36.7%), 202 by Nigerian Immigration Service (18.6%), 140 by Nigeria Police Force (12.9%), and 90 by Concerned Citizens (8.3%). 80% of all rescued victims were women and girls (same and 2019), with children making up 52.4% of all rescued victims in 2020 (slightly higher than 2019). A total of 263 (up from 212 in 2019) were rescued after being procured for foreign travel which promotes prostitution. 156 (14%) persons were rescued victims after external trafficking. 189 (up from 136) child abuse victims were rescued in 2020.
- The largest category of rescued victims were from Benue State (123, 11.5%), with Cross River (84, 7.9%), Akwa Ibom (81, 7.6%), Kano (64, 6%) and Sokoto (61, 5.7%) following. It is noteworthy that 2020 is the first in recent years that Edo State has not featured in the top five states for victims rescued by NAPTIP, even though the largest number of rescued victims were rescued from ‘procurement for foreign travel which promotes prostitution.’ It will be important to see, over the next several years, whether this is a one off incidence or whether the trend will continue in years to come, as other categories of trafficking are more intentionally focused upon by NAPTIP.
- Of the 78 (considerably down from 211 in 2019) victims rescued outside Nigeria, most were rescued from Benin Republic 22), Lebanon (21) and Oman (7). Rescues from Libya were limited to just 1 person after COVID-19 halted repatriations by IOM.
- 19 (drastically down from 74 in 2019) foreign nationals were rescued from trafficking in Nigeria, with the highest numbers from Benin Republic (9 or 47%) and Togo (5 or 26%).
- The 2020 Report notes that from inception of the Agency (2003) to date, NAPTIP has received a total of 8,507 cases, investigated 4,187 of them, rescued a total of 15,776 victims, secured 369 convictions and convicted 463 perpetrators.
To review the full report, click here.