by crossriverwatch admin
The Executive Secretary of Nigeria’s National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons [NAPTIP], Beatrice Jedy-Agba, has been named the 2014 trafficking in persons hero.
The award was conferred on her recently by the United States Secretary of State, John Kerry, in the Benjamin Franklin Room of the State department.
According to a statement made available to the press, the award is in recognition of her tireless efforts in fighting human trafficking and her passionate commitment to end modern day slavery.
The U.S. government said Mrs. Jedy-Agba is one of the 10 notable persons globally, who despite resistance, opposition and even threats to their lives protect victims, punish offenders and raise awareness of ongoing criminal practices in their countries and beyond.
During the award ceremony, Mr. Kerry said “the crime of human trafficking affects all parts of the world and no government is doing enough to combat it”.
He lauded the efforts of NAPTIP, noting that Mrs. Jedy-Agba has transformed the anti-human trafficking landscape by incorporating anti trafficking issues into national development discourse, planning and policy. He also called on all the awardees to form a global network of action and actors to combat the scourge.
The Secretary of State said “it takes a global village working together to combat a global crime”.
Apparently delighted by the recognition, Mrs. Jedy-Agba said the award would spur NAPTIP further towards more effective initiative in the fight against human trafficking.
The NAPTIP boss said “in the fact of justice and equality, all humanity are connected and criminals thrive when we disconnect.
“I feel honored and humbled by the award and recognition. But it’s not about me but my country Nigeria. This will serve as a motivation for more service, but more importantly to get our country back on tier one and improve the overall trafficking situation in Nigeria.
Mrs. Jedy-Agba was appointed Executive Secretary of NAPTIP in 2011. She has since then taken the lead in Nigeria’s effort to eradicate human trafficking, as well as ensure justice for trafficked persons.
The 2014 trafficking in persons report placed Nigeria on tier 2 ranking which means the country needed to increase its efforts in all areas including but not limited to justice for victims, prosecution for traffickers, and increasing prevention efforts through awareness creation.
The report called on Nigerian legislators to urgently amend the draft of the anti- trafficking bill to increase penalties to traffickers and ensure that the activities of the agency receive adequate funding as a national priority.
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