The Anambra State Government in collaboration with the State Police Command, rescued about 12 females including three underaged girls from a brothel in Awka.
The raid was carried out at Happiness Guest Inn in Amawbia, on Monday, June 19, 2023, after a tip off from a whistleblower.
Confirming the development on Tuesday in Awka, the State Commissioner of Women and Social Commissioner, Hon Ify Obinabo, said the underaged girls have been taken to a hospital for medical examination and possible treatment.
A statement by the media aide to the commissioner, Chidimma Ikeanyionwu, said Hon. Obinabo restated the state governments resolve in ending all forms of child kidnap, trafficking and Sexual slavery in the state.
“Hon Obinabo while recounting how she was able to apprehend the suspect alongside the police, warned hotel owners to desist from using underage girls in running their businesses or face the law and went ahead to assure that the case which has already received Mr. Governor’s attention will not be treated with levity,” the statement read.
Narrating their ordeal, the underaged girls who are all from Ebonyi state, said that they were taken by one Ifeoma and Chika from their house in Izza and brought to Awka on the promises of securing them a job but to their greatest surprise was forced to prostitution.
They revealed that the women who brought them to the brothel seized their phones and other belongings before handing them over to another woman called Ezenwannyi who notified them that they will only be released if they bring the sum of 150,000 naira or serve her for a period of one year.
According to them, they were able to use a whistleblower’s phone to get across to their family and the whistle blower in turn notified the Women Affairs Ministry who with the help of the police bust the brothel.
On how much they make daily at the brothel, the girls said they were mandated to bring the sum of 10,000 to 15,000 naira every night and 40,000naira every Sunday whereas any man they sleep with usually pays the sum of 1,000 naira and above which causes a lot of issues between them and their madam.
On her part, one of the parents of the girls Mrs Uchechi Friday said upon her daughter’s disappearance, she lodged a complaint at the police station in Abakaliki but was shocked when she got a call from her daughter which made her to seek for help from the women and social welfare Commissioner of Anambra state.
Mrs. Friday thanked the Commissioner for their prompt response and urged other parents to always be alert of their children’s welfare and whereabouts.
Meanwhile, the case has since been transferred to State Criminal Investigation Department Awka SCID, for comprehensive investigation and consequently charged to court.