World Day for International Justice: Obaseki harps on stiffer measures to curb trafficking, punish perpetrators

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The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has said there is need for a stronger collaboration among international actors to mitigate the menace of human trafficking and illegal migration, calling for the involvement of the International Criminal Court in effecting stiffer punishment for perpetrators, especially cartels propagating the dastardly act.

The governor said this in commemoration of the World Day for International Justice marked every July 17, by the United Nations and its agents, which celebrates the Rome Statute and the creation of the International Criminal Court.

According to him, “As countries and sub-national actors work towards curbing human trafficking and illegal migration, it is important to stress that there is an international angle to the campaign due to the extensive network of the perpetrators of the act. So, we need stiffer measures and a more holistic approach to mitigating the menace.

“At the state level, we have made concerted efforts to tackle human trafficking by enacting the Edo State Trafficking in Persons Prohibition Law (2018) and establishing the Edo State Taskforce Against Human Trafficking (ETAHT). We also have the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Law and the Child Rights Law. All of these are legal instruments that underpin our commitment to protect our people and rid the state of tyranny against vulnerable persons.”

The governor said it was important to have the ICC look into some of the activities of cartels that have made it a business to exploit unsuspecting people and ultimately lead them into what can best be described as modern-day slavery.

He said the state government and its institutions are ready to work with the ICC and other such international agencies in fighting the scourge of human trafficking, adding that measures are already being taken to reintegrate those that have been returned from the doom-fated journeys through the Mediterranean Sea to Europe.