It was a moment of jubilation and emotions as Miss Uduak Okon Etim reunites with her family after over twenty years of abduction .

Miss Uduak Okon Etim was kidnapped twenty years ago while In class at St. Joseph Roman Catholic Primary School Idu, Uruan LGA, and was trafficked to Benin City, in Edo State by her abductors.During her years in captivity , Uduak Was Subjected to modern day slavery, characterised by child labour , sexual abuse, physical torture and starvation .

Help came to Uduak when a good citizen petitioned the family to National Agency For Prohibition Of Traffic In Persons (NAPTIP) Benin Zonal Command, informing that there was a young girl in his neighbourhood going through torment daily .

Miss Uduak Okon Etim with the mother

Speaking while handing over the girl who is now a grown up to the family, Mrs Ijeoma Uduak; Zonal Commander National Agency For Prohibition Of Traffic In Persons (NAPTIP) Benin Zonal Command expressed gratitude to God for the successful reunion, noting that it was a long journey to victory, as several arrests was made after series of thorough investigation that took them months . She thanked the federal government for funding the agency and her team members ,who helped in ensuring that Uduak got freedom and rehabilitation. She also stated that two culprits involved In the Case have been apprehended and are still standing prosecution ,while in custody at a correctional facility .

The NAPTIP boss disclosed that the agency will ensure the abductors and their accomplice are sentenced, to serve as deterrent to others engaging in human trafficking and those who may intend to engage in such crime.She thanked the Leader of Central Uruan, and chairman Mosongo-Ibonda Clan advisory Council, Rev. (Engr) J B Effiong who assisted the Agency to identify the Village and family of Miss Uduak Etim, and equally appreciated Chief Emmanuel Nicholas for assisting with logistics.

Mrs. Ijeoma extended her gratitude to the village head of Idu, who at short Notice from his Clan Advisory Council organised a well attended re-unification event for the freed girl .The Benin Zonal Commander Of NAPTIP disclosed that after discovering that her abductors did not give her any formal education or help her to acquire any skill as promised, the Agency decided to train her before she could be released to her family .

“After proper career counselling ,NAPTIP discovered the hidden talent of Miss Uduak Etim in hair dressing. And the Agency through one of our supporting NGO’s the European union implemented by ION, funded Miss Uduak Okon Etim to acquire skills in Hair Dressing”.

Upon completion of training, ION purchased all Hair Dressing Equipments, Food Stuffs and supported her with the sum Of three hundred thousand Naira to rent a shop .

Recounting her ordeals in the hands of her captors, the victim thanked God for using National Agency For Prohibition Of Traffic In Persons (NAPTIP) to rescue her, and thanked the Benin Zonal Commander, Mrs Ijeoma Uduak for her efforts.The Zonal Commander pleaded with the Wife of the Governor, Dr (Mrs) Martha Udom Emmanuel to assist Miss Uduak Etim with family to secure a befitting accommodation .

“I’m aware of the good works of the Wife of your Governor in giving shelter to widows and I learnt Uduak’s Mother here does not have a good home , So I plead with our beautiful first lady to extend her shelter of hope to this poor family” God bless her.

The mother of the victim, Mrs. Esther Edet Udo Ekong couldn’t Control her emotions as she wept uncontrollably, stating that she had lost hope of ever seeing her daughter again having believed she had been used for ritual.

Rev (Engr ) J.B. Effiong , the Zonal Leader of Central Uruan thank NAPTIP for doing a thorough professional job in rescuing and training of Miss Uduak Etim who was kidnapped twenty years ago. He also thanked Governor Udom Emmanuel for ensuring human trafficking is banished from the State .

In Their Separate Remarks, The Vice Chairman Of Uruan LGA, Mrs Uduak -Udoenang, and the Secretary of Mosongo -Ibonda Clan Advisory Council, Chief Emmanuel Nicholas expressed gratitude to NAPTIP, saying they also share in the belief that the rescued girl, Miss Uduak Okon Etim is destined for greatness.

Giving a vote of thanks, the Village Head Of Idu, Etinnyin Godwin Edet Okoho thanked President Muhamadu Buhari And Gov. Udom Emmanuel For Sustaining Public Institutions such As NAPTIP. He thanked the Zonal Commander Of NAPTIP, Benin Command for rescuing the young lady , while thanking Rev (Engr ) J B Effiong and Chief Emmanuel Nicholas who assisted Agency identifying her family and Everyone who made the Rescue of Miss Uduak Okon Etim possible.

Etinnyin Okoho announced that Idu Village Council will pay one year shop rent For Miss Uduak Okon Etim to help in Establishing Her Business.

The event was witnessed by members of Idu Village Council; Led by Hon. Torobong Mbang, Family Heads, Youth Council, general public and members of Press community

Leave a Comment