Anambra State Governor, Professor Chukwuma Soludo has approved the Anambra State Action plan on human trafficking.
The approval came during the state Executive council meeting at the State Government House, Awka.
This followed the formal presentation of the document to the council by the Attorney General of the State, Prof Sylvia Ifemeje, who is also the Chairman of the State Taskforce.
The work plan was drafted from National Action plan on human trafficking and by the approval, all counter trafficking activities of the task force have received the backing of the State and the workplan has become one of the policy documents of the state.
The implication is that the state has okayed the document to be used to stamp out trafficking in the state.
Reacting to the development, the Anambra State Commander, National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Mrs Ibadin Judith-Chukwu hailed the state governor for taking the bull by the horn in approving the action plan.
She said with the approval, the taskforce is fully equipped for the war against human trafficking.
“By this, the taskforce is now fully equipped to source for funding from donor agencies and development partners and to receive funding from the state government.
“This has also given visibility to the taskforce before every body fighting human trafficking in the state,” she said.
She commended the inputs of the State Attorney General towards getting the Action Plan approved.
Ibadin, who is also the co-chair of the State taskforce, said by this approval, Anambra state has joined the rest of the states in Nigeria that have taken a cue from the National Workplan on human trafficking, saying it has boosted the capacity of the NAPTIP to deliver on its mandate.
The State NAPTIP boss also called on the state governor to assist the command with a befitting accommodation, to enable it work effectively.
“It is unfortunate that despite the enormous task we do, we do not have a befitting work space in Anambra.
“If we are not well-accomodated, how can we fight this crime?
“We arrest suspects and we receive victims.
“If we do not have a conducive environment where we habour the victims for psychological evaluation and rehabilitation, how can we do that.
“It will not augur well for the Action plan, that we are not well-equipped in terms of accommodation,” she noted.
On her part, the State Coordinator, Network Against Child Trafficking, Abuse and Labour, NACTAL, Eucheria Onyemaobi said the approval is win-win for the state in its effort to stamp out human trafficking.
According to her, with the taskforce comprising all relevant bodies and stakeholders, now armed with a policy document of the state, there will be no impediment again.
“What we are saying as a body working in the area of children trafficking is that the state government has done well.
“This is evident to the fact that in Anambra, we have a government that is responsive to the demands of the time.
“It also shows that the government is concerned about the future of the state and that is why it made haste to approve this Action plan.
“With this, the future of our children, who are the major victims of this trafficking, is now protected,” she enthused.