NEWSDALYNIGERIA: The Talithakum International Catholic Network Against Human Trafficking in collaboration with the Society Of African Missions,( SMA) OLA Project on Human Trafficking Response has embarked on prayer and awareness campaign against Trafficking in human Persons in Kaduna..

The campaign which held on Friday at the Queen Amina  College, Kaduna, in celebration of the 8th edition of International Day of Prayer and Awareness Against Human Trafficking 2022, with the Theme ” The Power of care, Women, Economy and Trafficking”

Speaking the Coordinator, Talithakum Kaduna/ Co- Coordinator SMA, OLA Human Trafficking Response, Rev. Sr. Monica Onwunali, OLA, hinted on the inception of celebration of the International Day of prayer and awareness against Human Trafficking ” it was in 2015, that Pope Francis set aside, the 8th of February each year, the feast of St Bahkitha, a Sudanese Young Girl that was kidnapped and trafficked to Europe”

“we chose the college because they are all girls, young women in the making to create awareness, to inform them of the evil of human trafficking, kidnaping, ritual killings and to say, in most of these, they young girls and Women are they victims”

Adding that, Bahkitha later became a Catholic Nun and a Saint and now she has become the Patron Saint to all those trafficked and ” today, we are in Queen Amina College, a big school of almost 2,000 thousand girls  to pray and create awareness against human trafficking, 

According to the activist,  the UN statistics showed that ” 72% of those trafficked are young women and girls, so it concerns us that is why we are in this School to create this awareness that this evil still shrives” While harping on this year’s theme, she called on govt and spirited individuals to ‘ create a friendly economy that will empower women and girls. 

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” we want the elimination of inequality against women, insecurity is rampant in our country especially, in Kaduna state, that’s why we are here today to ask government and those concerned to come to our aid, we. want a friendly economy, we want care, love, we don’t want hatred, trafficking,  or rape and we don’t want kidnapping, all these are evil, noting that, if we have employment, if they youths are engaged, we may not have the evils we are seeing today” she averred

While expressing satisfaction with commitment by the girls on the sensitization, evident by the  songs and drama presentations showcasing the ills of trafficking and rape in the  family and society, she admonished parents to take responsibility by training their children, but however noted that parents need jobs to do that, hence, her call on govt ” let there be jobs and if parents are working they shouldn’t neglect training their children especially, the girl child “she reiterated 

She further said her organization has been working  in collaboration with National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) to end and mitigate the ills of Human trafficking and others over two decades now.   

Similarly, Sr. Christabel Mashuka, OLA,  said what informed the awareness is the increase of human trafficking in our society today ” it’s really given us great concerns and each day you hear, it is on the increase and we looked at it and felt it’s necessary and high time, we start educating the young ones, so that they will not fall prey to this manace in our society today”

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While lamenting how it has now pervaded our different localities and communities and the need for people to speak out against it, she urged government to do the needful on the issues of Kidnappings, rape, ritual killings and stand by the citizenry ” alot has been happening, as if nobody is there to assist the masses; it’s as if every one is to himself and God for all; and if we’re able to punish perpetrators of evil, our society will be better” she added

On her part, a SS 3 science 2 student, Miss Rufaida Mustapha Abubakar, while appreciating the awareness created, said it has helped informed and enlightened them on how the girl child/ women can take care of herself against human trafficking, rape, kidnapping and inequality and the need to speak out, with a call on govt to empower the girl child” when you train a girl child, you train the world” she stated

In the same vein, a SS1 science student, Miss Shalom Anosike maintained the called on government to work assidously, to stop the ” Kidnappings of our girls, because it is not good for us; those who traffick girls to other countries use them and sell them, we are not to be. sold, because we are human beings not animals” While calling on parents and fellow girls involved in the act willingly to desist from it.

On her part,  Miss Joy Ayomide, a.SS2 Art 2 student, while commending the Church, Talithkum and SMA, OLA for sustaining the prayers  and awareness over years said ” this awareness has been going on for years, it’s a yearly celebration, it has helped the girlchild to know more about themselves and that we have the right to stand for ourselves and that we should not be silenced, noting that the girl child is special, she’s not for sale, hence not to be violated.

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According to her, the organizers need the supports of government and spirited organisations to help fight for the girl child/women, while admonishing parents not to’ believe blindly’ noting that” this happens because somebody want to take your child to this, that country to make it, parents should not be eager to make it by all means, adding that parents should curtail the freedom of their wards and create the necessary awareness at home which will in return guide their actions in the. society

The highpoints of the awareness campaign include carrying of placards with several inscriptions such as ” Trafficking in persons is a crime against humanity, Turn off the Red light! Stop Human Trafficking, We say No to Trafficking, We promote an economy of care which breaks down inequalities, Trafficking of girls is evil, I am not a commodity for sale- I have a great future, and Stop child Trafficking”  among others


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