Reps kick as Ngige shuns human trafficking probe

The House of Representatives has condemned the Minister of Labour, Employment and Productivity, Senator Chris Ngige, for shunning its invitations on the investigation of trafficking of persons out of Nigeria.

The House Committee on Diaspora, at its investigative hearing in Abuja on Thursday, observed that the minister had allegedly shunned five summons by it.

Chairman of the committee, Tolulope Akande-Sadipe, said the panel had narrowed down its probe into trafficking of Nigerians and their enslavement to illegal agents and recruiters.

Akande-Sadipe alleged that the ministry had failed to conduct due diligence on some of the agents, leading to their illegal activities.

She said, “The House Committee on Diaspora, in a bid to find workable solutions in tackling the menace of trafficking and the dehumanising condition of Nigerians abroad by some local and international syndicates, has been holding a series of inter-agency meetings with stakeholders.”

“But, regrettably, the Minister of Labour, whose portfolio is at the centre of the whole controversy, has refused to honour the committee’s invitation for five consecutive meetings

“It appears that there is a clear incompetence or complicity within the ministry that has led to this compromise in the trafficking and abuse of Nigeria citizens.”