BY ISAAC OLAMIKAN
A special meeting has been held at the Oba Palace, Benin City to find lasting solution to the problems of illegal migration, human trafficking and other security issues in the state.
The meeting which was convened by His Royal Majesty, Omo N’Oba N’Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Ewuare II, Oba of Benin was attended by the Director and officials of National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Chiefs, Enigie and Edionwere in Benin Kingdom.
Others who attended the meeting were senior and junior priests of Okhuaihe, senior and junior priests of Ovia, all priests in Iyekogba, all priest of Ake, all priestesses and native doctors as well as market women leaders.
Addressing the people, Omo N’Oba said the purpose of the meeting was to seek for peace, progress and development in the state.
His Royal Majesty informed the people that the state government in collaboration with the Palace are combining efforts to stop illegal migration and human trafficking among the people.
The Benin Monarch explained that Edo State has been seriously linked with illegal migration and human trafficking, hence the need for all hands to be on deck to combat the scourge.
His Royal Majesty said NAPTIP has informed the Palace of how the victims of human traffickers are subjected to oath taking, which makes it difficult for them to provide useful information to NAPTIP that could lead to the arrest of the perpetrators of human trafficking in the society.
The Oba of Benin noted that many of those trafficked never get to their destinations as they are subjected to slavery in Libya, while others died in the Mediterranean Sea, pointing out that many families have been grieving over the loss of their loved ones.
His Royal Majesty said the meeting was convened to warn those behind this illegal acts of human trafficking to desist or face the wrath of the law and the ancestors of the land.
The Omo N’Oba also warned priests and priestesses of the Benin Traditional Religion to stop offering services to human traffickers and urged them to use their God given spiritual gift and powers to do what is right at all times, by not subjecting victims of human trafficking to any oath.
On the issue of secret cult members who unleash terror and commit heinous crimes in the society, His Royal Majesty also warned them to have a change of attitude or be ready to incur the wrath of God and the ancestors, just as the Oba cautioned those still carrying out illegal activities of CDA in some villages in the state.
Special prayers was offered by the Benin Traditional Religion practitioners for the peace, progress and development of the state, while a curse was equally placed on those who may wish to do otherwise or go against Palace directives on the issues of illegal migration, human trafficking, cultism and Community Development Association.