No fewer than 61 Libya-bound Nigerians were rescued in a desert in the Niger Republic, among them a lady who claimed her pastor lured her into taking the risky journey with a promise of a better life in Libya.
One of the rescued women said she was tricked by her church pastor that he would provide a decent job for her in Libya.
“Our church leader said that I had to come with him to find a way to work in Libya, and then I got in the car to Kano, and he put me with some people to travel with.
“When I left home, I did not tell my sister where I was going, I just told her I was going to a beauty salon. I did not know what the trip was like. They said we were going to cross a safe path, but I regret everything; we took days without taking a bath.
“I want to draw the attention of women who are involved in risky ventures, to focus on knowing where to go, there is no reason for me to take this risk again,” she said.
The age range of the rescued 61 persons are between 17 and 50 while 29 of them are males and 32 are females.
Also recounting his nasty experience, one of the rescued 29 men, said they began to see signs of a bad journey when they left Kano State for a house in Katsina.
“I did not know what it was like. We were taken from Katsina to the Republic of Niger, and then we were kept in a place; I did not even know where we were. We were kept in the desert,” he said.
They were received by officials of the National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) after they were spotted by Nigerien police while patrolling a forest in the country.
Kano State NAPTIP official, Yahona Haruna said the trafficked victims were from Kano, Edo, Imo, Ondo, Osun, Lagos, Delta, Kwara, Akwa Ibom, Ogun and Ebonyi states.
According to Yohana, human traffickers make brisk business, which is why they use deceptive language and enticements to attract people with supposed money benefits abroad.
He said, “Due to the increase in human trafficking in Nigeria, NAPTIP has set up and commissioned anti-trafficking commissions in some states.
“Among the states are Kano, Jigawa, Kaduna and Katsina to engage the community in the fight against human trafficking and community violence that is on the rise in the region.”