The House of Representatives Committee on Human Rights has called on the federal government to provide emergency funds for the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), to enable it discharge its duties effectively.
Chairman of the committee, Hon. Beni Lar, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja yesterday.
“We appeal to the federal government to make available, emergency funds to NAPTIP, to enable it implement its mandate in Chad, Cameroun and Niger Republic, as per the bilateral agreements on trafficking in persons.
“Without adequate funding NAPTIP cannot carry out its duties effectively in those countries. Tracking Traffickers requires a lot of money,” she said.
The legislator said the committee would meet with the Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, on this issue to explore the possibility of raising some emergency funds for NAPTIP.
“The agency is the official government agency mandated by law to fight trafficking, to rescue girls, repatriate and rehabilitate them back home.
“NAPATIP had done this in the past successfully, especially when they had adequate funds,” she said.
On the recent abduction of schoolgirls in Chibok, Borno State, Lar said the agency was practically not doing much due to constraints of funds.
The chairman noted that the frequent attacks on schools and subsequent abduction of schools girls in the North-east by terrorists, was worrisome.
“This is a very worrisome situation and if Nigeria does not do anything about it, it will be a disaster for the country,” she warned.
Lar stated that as long as terrorism strived in the country, young girls would continue to be targets of terrorists.