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Immigration Foils Trafficking Attempt at Sokoto Border, Arrests Suspect

Immigration Foils Trafficking Attempt at Sokoto Border, Arrests Suspect

By Matthew Eloyi

Operatives of the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) Ilela border command in Sokoto have arrested 25-year-old Rukaya Hassan for attempting to traffic two underage girls across the border to the Niger Republic.

The Command Public Relations Officer (CPRO), Mohammed Abdullahi, disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja. Abdullahi stated that the victims have been handed over to the National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) for further investigations.

He noted that the swift operation was a response to the morale-boosting charge from the new Comptroller of Immigration (CGI), Mrs. Kemi Nandap.

During interrogation, Hassan, a resident of the Giribshi area in Sokoto, confessed that she did not know the two girls she was travelling with. “She claimed they were handed over to her by a woman in Sokoto named Maman Adnan, who paid for their transport to Niger,” Abdullahi revealed. “She also claimed the woman requested her to help take the two girls to another woman in Niger, named Amina Yunusa, who would give them jobs in her restaurant in Niamey.”

Further examination revealed that the two teenagers, Nabila Ibrahim, 17, and her sister, Zainab Ibrahim, 15, are from Zuru LGA in Kebbi State. “According to them, they were going to Niger to resume work in a restaurant, the owner of which they did not know, but their parents approved of the trip,” Abdullahi added.

Reacting to the incident, the Comptroller of Immigration at Ilela Command, Tony Akuneme, who conducted the interviews, invited NAPTIP Sokoto State to take charge of the two victims and the suspected trafficker to aid further investigation and possible prosecution.

Akuneme reiterated his commitment to sustaining the campaign against the Smuggling of Migrants (SOM) and Trafficking in Persons (TIP), aligning with the efforts of the CGI. He quoted the Immigration CG as thanking officers and men of the Ilela border command for their diligence and promised to reward outstanding personnel.

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