The trafficking of children for the purpose of domestic service, prostitution and other forms of exploitative labour is a widespread phenomenon in Nigeria. Children and women are recruited with promises of well-paid jobs in urban centres within the country or abroad, realising too late that they have been lured into a debt bond. Violence, coercion and deception are used to take victims away from their families. Regretfully, Nigeria is a source, transit and destination country for trafficked women and children. Prostitution, domestic and exploitative labour continues to fuel this modern from of slavery.
There is yet no reliable estimate of the number of children trafficked internally and externally primarily because of the clandestine nature of the phenomenon. The causes of children and women trafficking are numerous. They include poverty, desperation to escape violence, corruption, unemployment, illiteracy and ignorance.
To fight human trafficking, the Government passed the Trafficking in Persons Prohibition and Administration Act and established the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons and Other Related matters (NAPTIP) in 2003. Since then, investigation of cases, prosecution of criminals, rescue and rehabilitation of victims have been successfully carried out by the Agency.