Against the backdrop of the recent investigation by US television network, CNN, of desperate migrants from sub-Saharan Africa been auctioned in Libya, it has been discovered that an organized syndicates of Libyan and Nigerian origin are part of the trafficking organization.
According to reports, migrants are been exploited by smugglers when they make a required stop in the North Africa nation, as they are been kept in camps for members of their families to pay a required amount of money before they are put on boats bound for Europe.
Most smuggling rings are run by local organised gangs, militias and corrupt security officials in Libya, as many victims are trapped in unfamiliar surroundings with captors who are not shy to resort to violent means.
Investigations revealed that the migrants who are been transported from Nigeria to Libya by local nigerian contacts, then hands over the migrants to the traffickers especially as soon as they run out of money to pay for their boat fare, with female migrants facing danger of being used as sex slaves.
Smugglers are also known to blackmail migrants into doing free labour or outrightly selling them to other militias involved in human trafficking, while other times, they hold migrants for ransom and call their families to pay while issuing threats to kill them.
In an interview with CNN, a 21-year-old Victory, a Nigerian migrant from Edo State, narrated how he was repeatedly sold by his smugglers to engage in forced labour for his buyers who brutalised him alongside many others.
According to him, he was also held for ransom, while his mother in Nigeria “went to a couple villages, borrowing money” to save his life.
He told CNN, “I was sold on my way coming here. As I was sold they demanded a ransom. The pusher man that pushed me from Nigeria, I gave him money but he did not pay. So they said since he did not pay that money, they now sold me.
“From a week, they’ll start beating you so that your money will come quickly so I was there for eight months before I could pay my money and I went out”.
Meanwhile a peaceful protest has been held at the entrance of the Libyan Embassy in Germany, to condemn the trafficking events in the North African nation.
The protest which saw thousands from the black community in Berlin match to the embassy building and across the streets of Berlin on a loud protest against the killings and slavery of Nigerians and other black African people in Libya.
Speaking at the protest, which saw protesters with placards with various inscriptions like “Nigerian Lives Matters”, “Black African Lives Matters”, “No To Slavery”, the Bureau De Commisaire of Citizen Diplomacy Bureau, His Honorary Excellency, Jace Owie, described the auction of blacks in Libya as demonic and an egregious abuse of human rights.
Owie said the events were totally unacceptable and called on world leaders to prevail on the matter.