By Akanni Hamdalat Opeyemi
The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons has arrested one Ozigi Abdulkarim for allegedly luring his 19-year-old girlfriend into prostitution in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
NAPTIP said in a statement by its Head, Press and Public Relations, Josiah Emerole, that the victim was recruited from Gwarimpa, Abuja, by Abdulkarim and two others –Ngozi Ani and Princewill James – for onward transfer to an alleged trafficking kingpin, Rita Ani, in the UAE.
According to the agency, the suspects prepared her travel documents, took her to Ogbomoso, Oyo State, where an oath was administered on her before the journey.
It said two other suspects – Benson Emmanuel and Philip Joshua – were associates of the other four and played one role or the other in the movement of the victim.
It was learnt that when the victim arrived in Abu Dhabi, she was forced into prostitution for four years by Rita under excruciating conditions, including “flogging and insertion of hot boiling ring into her private parts whenever she did not make enough money a day.”
The suspects, it was learnt, were arrested by operatives of NAPTIP in two operations in Gwarimpa, Abuja; and Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
It was learnt that Rita, the prime suspect, who recently returned home to perform her traditional marriage rites preparatory to moving to the United Kingdom with her fiancé, was arrested in Ibadan by the newly established NAPTIP-Rapid Response Squad.
The statement added, “NAPTIP has arrested six persons, including a 25-year-old Abu Dhabi based Rita Ani, for the trafficking of girls from Nigeria to the United Arab Emirates to engage in forced prostitution.
“Rita belongs to a network of Nigerian traffickers based in Abu Dhabi who engaged Nigerian girls in international prostitution in that country.
“The other five are Rita’s elder sister, Ngozi Ani (aka Princess), Ozigi Abdulkarim, Princewill James, Benson Emmanuel and Philip Joshua (aka OJ).
“While investigations are ongoing, the suspects have made very useful statements concerning the case. Chinyere also confessed to having more girls working for her in the UAE. They will soon be charged.”
The Director-General of NAPTIP, Julie Okah-Donli, commended the operatives for smashing the network, adding that the agency would smoke out human traffickers to face justice no matter their hideouts.