- A Libyan salon operator, Asia Rita, has been arrested by the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) for alleged human trafficking
- Rita, who was paraded by the NIS on Monday, August 13, was found trying to traffick about seven victims in Katsina
- Also, the NIS has arrested a man, Mohammed Kabir, for allegedly being in possession of ‘high grade cannabis’ on his way to cross the Nigerian border to Niger Republic
The Katsina state command of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has nabbed a Libyan-based salon operator, Asia Rita, for alleged human trafficking, Punch reports.
Rita (44 years), who is also a mother of three children was paraded by the NIS on Monday, August 13, alongside seven suspected victims of the same crime.
She and her victims were reportedly intercepted by NIS some personnel at the Jibia Magama control post on their way to Libya where Rita runs a salon and food joint.
Olusola Ajisafe, the state comptroller of the Katsina command, speaking with newsmen on the development, said three of the rescued victims were from Oyo state, two from Lagos, while the others were from Bayelsa and Ogun states respectively. He put their ages between 11 and 44.
Ajisafe further revealed that despite the fact that the rescued victims were not from the same state, they all obtained their travelling documents in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital.
He said: “It may interest you to know that the suspected trafficker, Mrs Asia Rita, is in possession of residence visa of the State of Libya, and her passport indicated that she is a frequent traveller.
“It may also interest you, gentlemen of the press, to know that from July 17, 2018 till date, the command has intercepted two suspected traffickers and rescued 18 suspected victims of human trafficking.”
He went on to say that Rita and the victims would be handed over to the NIS headquarters in Abuja “for further interrogation.”
On her part, Rita said that she was in Nigeria to take her children, adding that she had been living in Libya for nine years and denying any knowledge of the victims. She said: “I stay in Libya where I operate a salon and sell food. At a point, I was working in a hospital in Libya.”
Meanwhile, the NIS has also arrested one Mohammed Kabir for allegedly being in possession of ‘high grade cannabis’.
Kabir, on his way to cross the Nigerian border to Niger Republic via an illegal route, was arrested by NIS operatives who were on a routine patrol along Babbar Ruga in Katsina state.
Ajisafe stated that the suspect would be handed over to the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) for further investigation.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com reported that the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) had declared that no fewer than 41 people had been convicted for various forms of human trafficking across the country between 2017 and 2018.
The director-general of the agency, Julie Okah-Donli, disclosed this after a road walk to sensitise people against human trafficking in Abuja.
Okah-Donli explained that 359 people had so far been convicted for different offences of human trafficking since 15 years of establishment of NAPTIP.
Suspected hard substatnce traffickers reject police accusations | NAIJ.com TV