The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking In Persons (NAPTIP) has charged Nigerians to desist from hiring domestic workers that are under 12 years age.
NAPTIP Director of Investigation, Josiah Emerole, said in Abuja yesterday while briefing the media that only people above 18 years should be hired.
He added: “No one should employ children under 12 years old as domestic workers, because children under 12 do not understand their rights and cannot resist abuse. The appropriate thing to do is to employ people above 18 years who know their rights and obligations.”
He also urged state governments to domesticate the Child Rights Act to curb abuse of domestic servants.
Emerole said the agency has arrested a 43-year-old woman, named Stephany Isaksson Bassey, an indigene of Akwa Ibom State living in Sweden for being in a possession of a two-month-old baby boy, who a DNA test revealled not to be her child and clearly indicated that there is no biological relationship between them.
“Following this result, we have arrested her so she could tell us the source of the baby. The baby is being taken care of by our care givers, while investigations continue,” he said.
Also, NAPTIP said one Mrs. Ifeoma Obinwa, who allegedly visited violence on her 14-year-old house-help was arrested after allegedly placing a hot knife on the victim’s thigh and buttocks for beating her child, thereby leaving her with grievous body injuries and untreated until operatives of the agency rescued her.
Another 37-year-old man, Francis Yusuf, from Plateau State and a staff of the Nigeria Investment Promotion Council (NIPC) was alleged to have raped his wife’s cousin living with them at their Jikwoyi, Abuja residence.
Mrs. Sandra Obiosio, from Rivers State, residing in Jabi Area of Abuja, was alleged to have violently abused a 12-year-old girl from Nasarawa State.
The agency said Mrs. Obiosio, who admitted to the offence, inflicted the injury on her housemaid for allegedly locking her daughter in the toilet and maltreating her.
NAPTIP said the cases are contrary to various sections of the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Enforcement and Administration Act 2015 (TIPPEA) and the Violence Against Persons (Prohibition) Act 2015 (VAPPA) and that suspects would soon be charged to court after investigations are concluded.