The Nigerian police has arrested three suspects accused of trafficking 35 pregnant women, six children and one newborn baby in Aba area of Abia State.
The three suspects who were paraded in Abuja alongside the owner of a charity home in Aba, reportedly operated in the charity home for about 10 years. Deputy Public Relations Officer of the Nigeria Police Force, Csp Aremu Adeniran, who spoke to newsmen disclosed that the owner of the charity home situated in Isiala Ngwa South Local Government Area of Aba, established the orphanage for the sole purpose of harvesting babies for sale.
According to Adeniran, investigation into the case is ongoing and those found guilty of trafficking 35 pregnant women, six children and one newborn baby would be made to face the law. The full statement from the police reads;
PARADE OF THREE (3) NOTORIOUS SUSPECTS FOR CRIMINAL CONSPIRACY AND DEALING IN BUYING AND SELLING OF NEW BORN BABIES AND CHILDREN WITHIN AND OUTSIDE NIGERIA; BY THE DEPUTY FORCE PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER, CSP AREMU ADENIRAN AT THE FORCE HEADQUARTERS, ABUJA. 2nd NOVEMBER, 2018.
Thirty-Five (35) pregnant girls/women, six (6) children and one (1) newborn baby rescued at the Nma Charity and Rehabilitation Centre Umunkpeyi, Isiala Ngwa South Local Government, Abia State belonging to Chief Lilian Nma Achumba.
i. Emmanuel Chigozie Elesuwa ‘m’ 44yrs
ii. Chioma David ‘f’ 33yrs
iii. Chief Lilian Nma Achumba ‘f’ 52yrs (Owner of Nma Charity Home in Aba, Abia State).
The Inspector General of Police, IGP Ibrahim K. Idris, NPM, mni on assumption of Office on the 22nd June, 2016 expanded the Anti-Human Trafficking and Women/Children Protection Unit of the Force under the Force Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department (FCIID) for improved service delivery and to be more effective and efficient to nip in the bud and deal with all forms of crimes and criminality as regards the rights and privileges of women and children.
2. The Anti-Human Trafficking and Women/Children Protection Unit of the Force in compliance with the directives and their expanded mandate have been working in good working synergy with relevant agencies of Government in the fight against the trafficking of persons and abuse of rights and privileges of women and children.
3. On the 20th of July, 2018, the personnel of the Nigeria Police Force and the Nigerian Immigration Service while on patrol at the Idi-Iroko Border Post in Ogun State, intercepted the above named suspects, Emmanuel Chigozie Elesuwa ‘m’ 44yrs and Chioma David ‘f’ 33yrs in possession of two (2) new born babies and on reasonable suspicion, interrogated them about the babies in their possession, but they could not give satisfactory account of the babies. The case was handed over to the Anti-Human Trafficking and Women/Children Protection Unit of the Force for discrete investigation.
4. Investigation into the case by the Anti-Human Trafficking and Women/Children Protection Unit of the Force revealed that the suspects arrested are notorious criminals that deal in buying and selling of babies and children within and outside Nigeria.
5. Consequently, the suspects, Emmanuel Chigozie Elesuwa ‘m’ 44yrs and Chioma David ‘f’ 33yrs admitted and confessed to the Police investigation team that they are members of a criminal gang that specialize in buying and selling of new born babies and children within and outside Nigeria and have been in operation for over ten (10) years. They further confessed that the two (2) new born babies found in their possession at Idi-Iroko Border was bought by them at the rate of Three Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira (N350,000.00) from one Chief Lilian Nma Achumba ‘f’ 52yrs, owner of Nma Charity Home in Aba, Abia State now in Police custody. They also revealed that they were on their way to Benin Republic to sell the two (2) new born babies to their cohorts and criminal business partners/syndicate for Seven Hundred Thousand Naira (N700,000.00) each.
6. During interrogation and further investigation into the roles played by Chief Lilian Nma Achumba ‘f’ 52yrs, the owner of Nma Charity Home in Aba, Abia State indicted in the confession of the two (2) suspects, Emmanuel Chigozie Elesuwa ‘m’ 44yrs and Chioma David ‘f’ 33yrs, it was discovered that the purpose of establishing the Orphanage Home is to harvest babies for sale and she also operate other branches of the orphanage home in Port-harcourt and some other parts of the Country.
7. Thirty Five (35) pregnant girls/women, six (6) children and one (1) new born baby were rescued at Nma Charity and Rehabilitation Centre Umunkpeyi, Isiala Ngwa South Local Government Area of Abia State belonging to the said Chief Lilian Nma Achumba. Twenty Eight (28) pregnant girls/women and three (3) children of the victims rescued have been officially handed over to the Ministry of Strategy and Social Development, Umuahia, Abia State and all have since been re-united with their families after receiving medical attention. The Principal suspect Chief Lilian Nma Achumba has admitted and confessed to her criminal roles in the case.
8. Investigation is being intensified to uncover other illegal orphanage branches being operated by the Principal suspect, to rescue victims and arrest other members of the syndicate still at large to curb the menace and bring them all to justice. They will all be arraigned in Court on completion of investigation.
9. The Nigeria Police Force wishes to implore members of the public to give useful and timely information on unscrupulous elements in the society hiding under the guise of orphanage rehabilitation homes to perpetrate these dastard and callous acts. The Force also enjoins Parents and Guidance to pay keen attention on the care of their wards and children especially the girl child.
CSP AREMU ADENIRAN
DEPUTY FORCE PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER