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CHILD TRAFFICKING IN NIGERIA: CAUSES, EFFECTS AND REMEDIES
This study focuses on the causes, effects and remedies of Child
Trafficking in Nigeria using Ijebu-Ode Local Government Area of Ogun State as a case study. This study identifies the major causes of child trafficking that stand as a bottleneck in Nigeria. Questionnaire was administered to collect relevant data which was analyzed, using the simple percentages method. It was discovered that poor family background, poverty, large family size, rapid urbanization among others are the major factor why many Nigerian children are vulnerable to trafficking. Having identified the causes, recommendations were further made to help in solving the problem. The researcher recommended among other things that, further ratification of international legal instrument aimed at protecting human rights and combating human trafficking should be made necessary and also, effective implementation of all the ratified international laws and regulations should be implemented.
1.1 Background of the Study
Nigeria, the most populous black nation in the world with an estimated population of about 140 million people (2006, Census), is endowed with abundant human and natural resources like oil, tin, limestone, zinc, natural gas, good vegetation and climate which varies from being equatorial in the South, tropical in the centre and arid in the north. This great country, 3rd world largest producer of crude oil has about 5.3% annual growth rate but it is estimated that 70% of Nigerians live in poverty (Tola, 2008).
The above features are legacies of decades of prolonged military rules coupled with mis-management and corruption, which have daily impoverished the people and made them “beggers” of a sort amidst plenty. This act of misrule has increased anti-social behaviour amongst the populace. Sadly, the quest for material wealth at all cost has introduced a new dimension of wealth creation into the psyche of Nigerians-which is child
Child trafficking is the third largest criminal activity in the world after arms and drug trafficking (Tola, 2008). In the last decade, the phenomenon of child trafficking has considerably increased throughout the world and most especially in Nigeria. Every year, million of individuals, mostly children are misled by decot or forced to submit to servitude.
The UN convention Against Transnational orgainsed crime
(2000) defined child trafficking as follows;
“the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, abduction, fraud, deception, of abuse of power, giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person for the purpose of
“exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs”
ANPPCAN (2010) sees child trafficking as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, habouring or receipt of children by means of threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, abduction, fraud, deception, abuse of power, a position of vulnerability or the giving or receiving of payments, benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over the child for the pupose of exploitation.
Research evidence shows that children are trafficked for the purpose of domestic services, prostitution and other forms of exploitative labour (UNICEF, 2007). These has been a serious concern about the cause of child trafficking in Africa as a whole and Nigeria as a country in particular.
UNICEF (2007) has identified poverty, large family size, rapid urbanization among others as the major factor why many Nigeria children are vulnerable to trafficking.
Parents with large family are often prone to those traffickers deceit in giving away some of their children to city residents or even strangers promising a better life for them. Trafficking deprives child victims the privilege to exercise their wide range of rights, including the right to belong and identify, the right to freedom, education among others. ANPPCAN(2010).
As a result of this, the study on the causes, effects and remedies of child trafficking in Nigeria is worth pursuing. It is hoped that the findings of this study will provide meaningful information as to the stoppage of the act in Nigeria and Africa as a whole.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Children living in rural areas in Nigeria often lack access to quality education, good health and other basic needs which make their parents to entrust them in the hands of other family members who are financially upright to help them train their children.
However, this custom has been abused by those family
members or relatives because of the exposure of these children to hazardous work, prostitution and other forms of inhuman
This act posses a serious challenges to the growth of the Nigerian society, economically, socially and politically.
1.3 Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is:
a. To ascertain why Nigerians engage in child Trafficking .
b. To find out the links between trafficking in childrens and the entertainment and sex industry.
c. To ascertain whether the victims of child Trafficking in Ijebu-Ode knew the true nature of the jobs they would go into before accepting the offer.
d. To find out how informed, the inhabitants of Ijebu-Ode, are on child Trafficking .
e. To proffer useful suggestions on possible ways of curbing the problem of child Trafficking.
1.4 Research Questions
a. To ascertain why Nigerians engage in child Trafficking .
b. What is the links between trafficking in childrens and the entertainment and sex industry.
c. are the victims of child Trafficking in Ijebu-Ode know the true nature of the jobs they would go into before accepting the offer.
d. how informed, the inhabitants of Ijebu-Ode, are on child Trafficking .
e. What are the useful suggestions on possible ways of curbing the problem of child Trafficking.
1.5 Significance of the Study
This study will be of great importance, as it will provide necessary information on the causes, effects and remedies to child trafficking in Nigeria. It will also provide further research in combating trafficking in Nigeria. The study will also be useful for further purposes and for further researches into child trafficking within and outside the country.
1.6 Scope of the Study
The study will be restricted to the causes and effects of child trafficking in Nigeria. Solution to the problems of child trafficking will also be sought in the cause of this research.
1.7 Limitation of the Study
This research focuses on the causes, effects and remedies of child trafficking in Nigeria but due to finance, time and other factors, the study will be limited to Ijebu-Ode Local Government Area of Ogun State.
1.8 Operational Definition of Terms
Child: Child in this study means any person less than eighteen years of age
Trafficking: The recruitment, transfer, harbouring, or receipt of a child for the purpose of exploitation.
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