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Saturday, 18 November 2023 07:14

Immigration foils attempt to smuggle 7 Nigerian girls to Burkina Faso for prostitution

The Nigeria Immigration Service ( NIS), Lagos Seaports and Marine Command have foiled an attempted smuggling of seven Nigerian girls to Burkina Faso for prostitution.

The girls were intercepted on Sunday, 12th November 2023 at about 19.00 hours.

The Comptroller, of Lagos Seaports and Marine Command NIS, Mohammed Saddiq, disclosed this during a press briefing in Lagos on Friday, November 17, 2023, said the suspects had been under the command’s radar for about two months following intelligence gathered by its operatives which in turn led to their arrest by Badagry, Marine Border Patrol Team along Pashi waterway bordering Nigeria and Benin Republic.

He said the prime suspect, Miss Helen Dandam Nanbyen, 26, hails from Wadata village in Wase Local Government Area of Plateau State.

“It was uncovered during the course of the investigation that the seven smuggled victims whose ages range from 19 to 23 hail from Langtang North Local Government Area of Plateau State,” he stated.

“It is important to state that the girls willfully consented to the journey under false identities with intent to indulge in prostitution while in their country of destination,” the Comptroller said.

He noted that the suspects neither have any valid travel documents nor financial means to sustain themselves during the journey.

"Narrating her role in the illicit business, Miss Dandam admitted her involvement in prostitution and facilitating the transportation of potential sex workers into Burkina Faso with the support of her Madam, an indigene of Edo State who operates a Beer Parlour in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso capital. She also admitted working with one Miss. Ella whom she claimed recruited four out of the girls but she is currently at large.”

Saddiq maintained that the arrest is a fallout of the Command‘s renewed commitment to the directive of the Ag, Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, Caroline Wura-ola Adepoju toward curbing migrant smuggling, human trafficking and all forms of trans-border crimes within the maritime space.

“I want to use this medium to commend the role of the intelligence community in this endeavour. I also call on parents to be more concerned about their children’s activities,” he said.

The Immigration boss further disclosed that illegal migration and human trafficking via the waterways have continued to increase, noting that the service will continue to patrol and police the riverine communities against the backdrop of discouraging the Illicit acts.

Based on the directive from the Ag, Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, Caroline Wura-ola Adepoju, the Lagos Seaport and Marine Command boss also disclosed that the females will be handed over to the Plateau State Government thus, they will be reunited with their families and love ones.

Miss Helen Dandam Nanbyen who spoke with newsmen said that she had travelled to Burkina Faso once, adding that her madam had assured them that a bartender job is available for them over there in Ouagadougou.

She admitted to spearheading the voyage of the females' attempt to migrate to Burkina Faso via the waterways from Lagos.

One of the girls expressed regret on the attempted migration to Burkina Faso, saying that she never knew that the trip would end up in Burkina Faso; rather she was told that there were pub jobs for them in Lagos State.

Representatives from Plateau State led by Mr. Emmanuel Sebu from the Liaison Office received the females and he’s expected to hand them over to the state governor.

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