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We’re engaging witchdoctors to fight human trafficking – NAPTIP DG

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The National Agen­cy for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Per­sons (NAPTIP) says it has engaged some local witch­doctors in Benin, Edo as am­bassadors in fighting human trafficking in the country.

The director general of NAP­TIP, Ms. Julie Okah-Donli, dis­closed this at a symposium for the agency’s officials in Abuja.

Edo state has the highest number of traffickers and vic­tims of human trafficking in the country. Okah-Donli said investigations revealed that some local witch doctors were involved or used in the traffick­ing of persons to Europe.

“When we gathered these witchdoctors recently to sen­sitise them on what human trafficking victims go through in Europe, they were shocked. And they have made their com­mitments to work with us to fight the menace of human traf­ficking,” the NAPTIP boss said.

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She said that the agency would involve and sensitise more witchdoctors in Edo and other parts of the country and make them NAPTIP am­bassadors in fighting human trafficking.

Okah-Donli said that once human traffickers got a vic­tim’s consent by force, fraud or coercion, such person would be made to take oath of secre­cy and allegiance before a local witchdoctor in a shrine.

According to her, some rit­uals are performed on the vic­tims where the potential vic­tim’s urine, pubic hair, finger nails, eye lashes, menstrual blood, underwear and other personal effects are collected.

She said that once these rit­uals were done, it would be seen as bond between the vic­tims and traffickers. “In spite of the rituals and oath taking, the victim reaches the destination point only to realise the farce behind the earlier sweet prom­ises of a greener pasture. And in this circumstance, such per­son is told in strict terms not to renege on the oath of secrecy as it cannot be reversed,” the NAPTIP DG said.

She pledged the agen­cy’s commitment and de­termination to defeat the scourge of trafficking in persons. (NAN)

READ ALSO : Former trafficked victims trained on self-help by NAPTIP, PRAWA in Anambra

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