Discover why Nigerian women engage on prostitution in Europe
They are from Nigeria, these young women between the ages of 15 and 30 are forced to engage in prostitute work in Europe, signing a contract of loyalty with a fetish called “juju”.
The “juju” is a mystical object that according to the witch doctor, have supernatural powers that could lead to the curse of those who violated the contract signed with him. Before the trip to Europe, young women are often subject to the voodoo ritual and the witch doctor makes a contract between the “juju” and they to force them to remain faithful to their commitment. If not, they expose themselves to the curse of “juju” for the rest of their lives.
In fact, juju has no power or influence over young women. It is just used as a means to force young women to repay their “debt”. Juju is valuable only because of the naivety of young women in the sex trade.
Trafficking of women in Europe began in the early 1980s. This phenomenon is one of the black spots in contemporary African societies. In Nigeria, for example, this trade is practiced by so-called “madams”.
These women travel young girls to European countries such as France, Russia and Italy according to some NGOs. Madams recruit most of their “employees” in the city of Benin City in Edo State, south-South part of Nigeria. Immediately they arrived in Europe, they will be forced to trade via sex.
The price of a pass varies between 5 and 10 euros to repay the debt of madam which often oscillates between 10,000 and 20,000 euros. To pay the debt, the girl is obliged to engage in sexual activity under the control of madam who receives all the proceeds until the payment of the debt.
“Instead of doing healthy jobs like hairstyling as we were promised, we now use our bodies to make money. And this money goes directly into the pockets of madam, because I have to repay her debt,” says a 29-year-old girl.
According to Nigeria law enforcement, there is the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) in Nigeria and Nigerian laws give the institution the power to arrest suspects, prosecute them, search premises, seize property derived from trafficking and place the proceeds in a fund for victims of the sex trade, yet there are more tolerance and rise in sex trafficking.