What are the major causes of human trafficking in Nigeria?

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

/ by xclusivefx Channels
Despite the fact that it is the 21st century, and we live in a civilised world, the issue of human trafficking still exists. Nigeria is one of the countries that have suffered from this problem for a long time. Today, we will try to figure out the major causes of human trafficking in Nigeria. What pushes people towards human trafficking? What is the purpose of human trafficking? Find out here. 

What is human trafficking? According to the UN’s protocol that was created in order to prevent trafficking (also known as Palermo Protocol), human trafficking is when people recruit, transfer, transport or harbour other people against their will by using force, blackmail, deception, fraud and other malicious means. 

Human trafficking has three elements to it:
1  The act, or what exactly has been done to the victim. Were they illegally recruited, transported or harboured?

2 The means, or how it has happened. Did they use coercion, force, blackmail, fraud, abduction or deception? 

3 The purpose, or why it has happened. Were victims trafficked for exploitation, slavery or organ removal? 

While we are going to touch a little bit on the subject of why human trafficking happens in Nigeria, the main thing we are going to discuss is what pushes people into the realm of human trafficking

Human trafficking is a global problem. However, a large portion of victims comes from the African countries, particularly Nigeria. Nigeria is both the source and the destination for human trafficking. The country is actually on the U.S. 

Tier 2 Watch list. Women and children become the victims of child trafficking more often than men. They are used for the purposes of slavery, exploitation and servitude. However, men and young boys can also be used in human trafficking for the purposes of working in quarries, mines and on the fields.

 But what pushes Nigerians towards human trafficking? Find out below.

Five causes of human trafficking 

1. Armed Conflict  

armed conflict

As Nigeria is quite a tumultuous country, with Biafra conflicts in the south and Boko Haram in the north, it is no wonder that some people might want to get away. This, in turn, makes them extremely vulnerable to the perpetrators of human trafficking. At the same time, those that are not trying to leave anywhere can also become victims of human trafficking if they stay in the epicentre of the armed conflict. Either side can just barge into the homes and kidnap people to use them in their plans. 

Ignorance on the topic of human rights


One of the main causes of human trafficking in Nigeria is the complete disregard for human rights. Women (and also children) are often viewed as objects that can be sold. Thus, they are sold into slavery and sexual exploitation or forced into marriages. On the other hand, women often resort to seeking alternative opportunities outside of their home country because of the lack of respect or discrimination. When this happens, they are more easily deceived into human trafficking. 



Among other causes of human trafficking, there is also the constant search for wealth. People are often unsatisfied with what they have, even if they have perfectly decent living conditions, so they try to go out there in search of a better life.

 This is particularly relevant for Nigerians, as many of them have this incessant idea of getting very rich very fast. The Nigerian web is riddled with ads for earning money with little to no effort (MMM, anyone?), and lots of people actually try them and end up in the hands of very bad people. 



Despite the fact that Nigeria has one of the biggest and fastest growing economies in Africa, many of its citizens cannot find jobs. Many people cannot get decent education and learn relevant skills in order to get a proper job. 

Therefore, they try to search somewhere else. What is also important to mention is that even those who have a diploma and skills struggle to find a place to work. And as they try to find something in another country, they might encounter fraudsters that might lure them into something terrible under a false pretence of employment abroad.

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