Edo State Anti-Human Trafficking Task-force has intensified awareness campaign against illegal migration and human trafficking in rural areas of the state, to discourage residents in the hinterlands from the menace.
Speaking at a town hall meeting with different interest groups in Ehor Grammar School, Uhunmwode Local Government Area, chairperson of the task-force, Prof. Yinka Omorogbe, urged women to assist their daughters in identifying skills to acquire and support them in the training rather than encouraging them to embark on illegal journey overseas.
She urged residents in the communities to take advantage of the free skills acquisition trainings provided by the state government to develop themselves.
Omorogbe added that there was nothing bad in embarking on journeys overseas, but not as slaves, noting that with the right skills, people could travel legally.
She encouraged students at the town hall meeting to strive for the best in their academic pursuits and shun individuals or groups who intend to lure them with false promises.
Uhunmwode council Chairman, Napoleon Agbama, said it was sad that young people were being deceived to embark on dangerous journeys, and advised women to take the message against human trafficking to their children.
Representative of Market Development Programme in the Niger Delta (MADE), Rufus Idris, said through partnership with the state government, MADE is supporting the government to encourage more people to take to farming, rearing of birds and goat.
National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons representative (NAPTIP) thanked the state government and participants at the meeting, adding that human trafficking exposes victims to life-threatening diseases.
An official of the Nigerian Immigration Service, Atiti Paul, stressed the need for parents to draw closer to their children to guide them against traffickers.
One of the victims, Aimienoho Precious, spoke of her experience in Libya, adding that she was a sales representative before one of her customers lured her into travelling abroad illegally.