Nosa Akenzua, Asaba
Delta state Governor, Sen. Ifeanyi Okowa has inaugurated a 17-man task force to check human trafficking and irregular migration in the state.
The task force which has the Commissioner for Justice and Attorney-General of the state, Peter Mrakpor as chairman was inaugurated on Friday in the presence of the Director-General of the National Agency for the Prohibition and Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Dame Julie Okah-Donli in Asaba.
Gov. Okowa stated that the task force had become necessary bearing in mind the high incidents of trafficked persons from the state.
“We are very worried as a state that we occupy high position among the states affected by human trafficking and irregular migration; we are committed as a state to stem the tide that is why we are setting up this serious task force.
“We need to reach out to our people and discourage them from seeking greener pastures that do not exists; irregular migration and human trafficking are evils that have visited our state and it must be checked,” he said.
The governor added that “we will need to get the church, the traditional institution, the youth, all relevant groups to be involved; we need partners for the message to get to a lot of persons within the shortest possible time to check irregular migration and human trafficking.”
He assured of his administration’s preparedness to carry out reintegration programmes for those who return, observing that “we have chosen the right set of persons to be members of the task force and we congratulate them, believing that they will carry out their functions diligently.”
Responding, the Director General of NAPTIP, Dame Julie Okah-Donli said the task force is not a money making venture, but a service to humanity.
“It is expected that the task force will use this platform to prevent human trafficking, support and protect trafficked persons through a more coordinated approach in the state, develop strategies and state action plans on counter-trafficking issues,
carry out programmes for effective reintegration of trafficked victims into the society, work with the state ministry of justice on how to protect, assist and provide access to justice for victims of trafficking, among others,” she stated.