Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar has directed Commissioners of Police to set up anti-human trafficking units in their commands as part of measures to curb the menace.
He threatened to hold heads of commands and divisions responsible for any incident of trafficking in women and children in their jurisdictions.
The IG gave the directive in Abuja on Tuesday while addressing police officers in charge of anti-human trafficking unit in the country.
Abubakar said the police would collaborate with well-meaning agencies to wage a successful war against the menace.
He said, “Human trafficking is a crime against humanity and the police are willing to partner with well-meaning agencies to combat this menace; all state commissioners of Police should set up anti-human trafficking units in their commands immediately.”
In her remarks, the Country Representative of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes, Ms. Miriam Sissoko, said drug and human trafficking across the world raked in $32bn annually, adding that 2.5 million people were involved in the business.
Sissoko, who was represented by the officer in charge of anti-human trafficking in the agency, Ms. Anne Ikpeme, noted that drug, firearms and human trafficking was the most lucrative form of transnational crime.
She called on the international community to reach an understanding on how to tackle trafficking in women and children, and pointed out that UNODC has been cooperating with the Nigerian government in fighting the menace since 2000.
She said UNODC had worked with National Agency for Prohibition of Traffic in Persons, the police as well as governmental and non-governmental organisations in the country.
Sissoko said, “Human trafficking brings huge profit for the traffickers and misery, pain, frustration, deprivation, trauma, and denial of opportunities for self-actualisation to the victims. Recent data on TIP indicate that it is the third, after trafficking in drugs and firearms, most lucrative form of transnational organised crime.”