HomeCover StoriesEXCLUSIVE: Hisbah intercepts 50 Saudi-bound travelers at Kano motor park en route...

EXCLUSIVE: Hisbah intercepts 50 Saudi-bound travelers at Kano motor park en route to Lagos


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The Kano State Hisbah board has intercepted at least 50 Saudi Arabia-bound travelers at Hotoro Luxurious motor park on their way to Lagos state.

Daily News 24 reports that the Hisbah operatives, decided to stop the travelers after getting suspicious that they might be trafficking victims.

The board said 22 of the travelers are Kano indigenes while 29 of them came from different neighboring states and even from Niger Republic.

It was gathered that among the 49 women in the trip, there are married women, divorcees and unmarried girls.

The Hisbah board said the Saudi-bound travelers were planning to depart from Kano to Lagos state and then to Cotonou and Togo, where their visas would be processed.

In an interview, one of the travelers, who did not reveal his name said he left his two wives behind to join his brother in Saudi Arabia, who left some time ago.

“I am a native of Zamfara state, where I left my two wives. My elder brother who is already in Saudi Arabia sponsored me for this trip,” he said.

On her part, Indo Abubakar, 20, said she came from Maradi in Niger Republic after she was sponsored by one Rashida, a Saudi-based woman, through her mother.

“I was brought to Kano along with many others, but I don’t know the details of the trip or its purpose. I was just asked to come,” she said when asked about why she didn’t choose to travel to Saudi through her country.

Another woman Sakina Haruan, who claims to be from Takai LGA of Kano state, said she paid N3.5 million to a Saudi-based agent called Alhaji Basiru, with a promise of complete N1 million balance.

“We were supposed to go to Lagos and from there, we will be flown to Cote d Voire and then to Saudi Arabia, but,” she said.

Asked why she wanted to travel to Saudi, she explained: “I want to go and rest because my husband died and left me with five orphans.

Also read: EXCLUSIVE: Hisbah arrests 14 over Betnaija sports betting in Kano

“I don’t have any promise for a job there but I hope to generate some money and return home after the Hajj exercise”.

Ms Sakina added that she sold her children’s farm which they inherited from their late father to raise the N3.5 million for the Saudi trip.

“I have to use the money to go and pray because we don’t have what to eat here in Nigeria. Life is difficult,” she said.

When pressed on why she didn’t use the funds to start a business in Kano, she replied: “I have to go and pray to Allah to remove this poverty that he had inflicted on us. Businesses in Nigeria are not succeeding”.

Confirming the arrests, Dr Mujahid Aminuddeen, the Deputy Commandant-General of Hisbah (DCG), said 49 women and two men were intercepted by the board’s operatives at the Hotoro motor park.

“These people have refused to stay at home and do legitimate business. Instead they are being used by human traffickers and scammers with a promise to take them to Saudi Arabia by road,” said/

According to him, “these people would be moved through a long chain of countries which make their trip uncertain. And they should know that even in Mecca not all people are good”.

He said some of them paid between N3 million, N3.5 million and above to scammers who could take them to their deaths.

“And the painful thing is that these people are not wise despite their age. Some of them are married, some are even mothers, but they have abandoned their kids to go on a wid goose chase. The youngest woman among them is the one that came from Maradi, who is just 20 years-old. This is unfortunate,” he added.

Dr Aminuddeen said the Hisbah board has handed over the travelers to the National Agency for the Prohibition of Traffick in Persons (NAPTIP) for further action and possible prosecution.


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