An Assessment Of The Broadcast Media In The Campaign Against Child Labour And Human Trafficking In Nigeria

Project and Seminar Material for Mass Communication

An Assessment Of The Broadcast Media In The Campaign Against Child Labour And Human Trafficking In Nigeria


Abstract


This study was carried out to assess the broadcast media in the campaign against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria using 4 selected broadcasting media stations in Lagos State as a case study. Specifically, the study was aimed at examining if the broadcasting media has been campaigning against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria, examine the extent broadcasting media has helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria, examine if the campaign against child labour and trafficking by broadcast media has created awareness of the situation among citizens. The study employed the survey descriptive research design. A total of 141 responses were validated from the survey. The study adopted the Social Responsibility Theory and Agenda Setting Theory. From the responses obtained and analysed, the findings revealed that the broadcasting media has helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria to a high extent. The study therefore recommend that the media should also undertake more investigate reporting in order to unearth all the hidden issues that could assist in apprehending and punishing those behind this child trafficking. The security agents should also be more alive to their duties of protecting lives and property. Anybody found guilty of child trafficking should be made to face the full wrath of the law to serve as deterrent to others. More so, governments should invest in education and provide alternative economic opportunities for children. This will greatly reduce the number of those that will be available for trafficking. Countries should be encouraged to take action against this crime at the national level first, supported by international bodies. There should be severe penalty for traffickers at home and at the destination countries. Basic rights of the victims of trafficking must be respected bearing in mind their special needs and predicament. The press should raise awareness about migration related risks and monitoring migration trends within and between countries


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Trafficking in person especially children as well as child labour constitute some of the cruel deviations from the concept of societal upbringing of a child. The severe exploitations, abuses and deprivations meted out on these children under trafficking in persons and forced labour conditions have proved inimical to their development and by extension that of the society. A continuation of such abuses and exploitations would seriously undermine the developmental capacity of children, thereby mortgaging the future of the entire nation.

Nigeria, like most other countries of the world, is faced with myriad social problems and crimes. The rate of violent crimes against the human person is alarming Nigeria, especially in this digital age. Child labour and human trafficking are among the most heinous crimes against the human person (Abubakar, 2001). The menace of child labour and human trafficking has crept deep into the fabrics of most riverine areas, especially in the South-South Geo-political Zone of Nigeria. This heinous act is, however, not insurmountable. One of the means of fighting child labour and human trafficking is the use of the broadcast media as well as the statutory agency established specifically for this purpose (Abubakar, 2001).

The National Agency for the Prohibition of trafficking in Persons and Other Related Matters (NAPTIP) is the public organisation vested with the responsibility of addressing issues of human trafficking and child abuse in Nigeria.

According Adebayo (2001,p.67) opines that most of the needs of the children are those that enhance their growth and development from infancy to adulthood. At this stage of the child development, the most important issue is the provision of amenities and enabling socio-cultural –environment suitable for the sustained enhancement of the mental, physical, social health of the child and ultimately society. The seed of reproduction that the Almighty God put inside man ensures the continued existence of the human specie throughout history and will continue till the end of time.

This in humanity of man to young persons has an age long history. In the last twelve years the crime has greatly increased as people are moss-led by deceit or forced to summit to servitude for economic purposes due to dissemination. This act is perpetrated both internally and externally, Nigeria happens to be one of the destination points for human trafficking as the “crime harming a child physically, sexually and emotionally” (Maduewesin, 2002). Uchem (2008,p.3) argues that there are no statistical records on how the media have churned out news on this menace. In the recent times, studies have shown that human trafficking basically for house helps service is a global issue. Also Lutz (2002,p.24) affirms that house help in different places were largely young, single girls of age 14 years and above.

Child trafficking in Nigeria has flourished despite constitutional provisions outlawing slavery and forced labour in section 34(1) of 1999 constitution which stated that every individual is entitled to respect for the dignity of his person and accordingly-(a) no person shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment; (b) no person shall be held in slavery or servitude; and (c) no person shall be required to perform forced or compulsory labour. Sections 223-225 of the criminal code, applicable in southern Nigeria, provide for sanctions against whoever trades in prostitution and facilitates the transport of human being within or outside Nigeria for commercial purposes. Likewise articles 278-280 of the penal code, operative in the northern states forbid and punish the buying and selling of minors for immoral purpose, buying or disposing of slaves and unlawful compulsory labour. In 1998, the constitutional right project raised the alarm on what they called child trafficking and slavery in Nigeria.. Adebayo (2001,p.188) states that it is rather unfortunate that poverty and selfishness in many homes have corrupted the African culture of fostering as it has been criminally exploited by traffickers to subject innocent children of school age to forced labour at homes, factories, plantation, offices and streets.

Nkwocha (2009,p.143) maintains that the press uses mass media which are the channels that professional communicators use in disseminating messages widely, rapidly add continuously to arouse the traffickers the dangers in trafficking vulnerable especially children, they are the channels through which mass, but diversified populations are reached simultaneously. The broadcast media, especially television and radio are powerful tools for opinion, moulding, agenda setting, public debate, integration, and etcetera. According to Okunna (2002,p.273), it yields a lot of power. It has the responsibility to prepare it viewers for social change. Thus the broadcast media plays an increasingly valuable role in explaining, interpreting and commenting upon event in the society.

Nevertheless, the broadcast media’s role in creating awareness in human trafficking and child labour by churning out programmes in a dramatized way, extensive reportage on human trafficking and child abuse through films, dramas and programmes on the broadcast media is a worthwhile venture. The broadcast media campaign coverage on information few people directly experience and unraveling happenings that relates to this scourge. Therefore it is believed that the Nigerian media can through their campaign bring about a social change in human trafficking and child labour in Nigeria.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

I beat every sound minded Nigerians imagination why such act like human trafficking that is akin to slavery should continue after more than 200 years since slavery was stopped all over the world. Unfortunately, Nigeria has been indicted as a transit point irrespective of efforts of the media, government and non-governmental bodies towards finding a lasting solution to the change. The exploitive and slave like conditions meted out on children under the age of seventeen is better described as cruelty to the Nigeria society. This indecent and ungodly act-should not strive. Annually, thousands of children are reportedly smuggled across borders and sold as a mere commodities. As a result of this ugly trend, their survival and development are incessantly threatened, their right to life, jeopardised. However, as children constitute untapped resources to every nation, the incessant nature of neglect, abuse and torture meted out on them in form of trafficking requires an empirical examination. The problem necessitating this study is therefore: What is role of the broadcast media in campaigning against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

Research objectives are just as useful as they are in most other aspects of life. “Research objectives provide the researcher a wonderful feeling of aim and direction,” according to Torty (2021). The study’s overall purpose is to assess the broadcast media in the campaign against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria.

The study, on the other hand, was focused on achieving these precise goals:

  1. Examine if the broadcasting media has been campaigning against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria.
  2. Examine the extent broadcasting media has helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria.
  3. Examine if the campaign against child labour and trafficking by broadcast media has created awareness of the situation among citizens.

1.4 Research Questions

Research questions provide structure and direction to a study in scientific inquiry. As a result, according to Torty (2021), “research questions should truly constitute an enlargement of the research problem.”

The following research questions were posed in accordance with the study’s objectives:

  1. Has broadcasting media been campaigning against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria?
  2. To what extent has broadcasting media helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria?
  3. Has the campaign against child labour and trafficking by broadcast media created awareness of the situation among citizens?

1.5 Research Hypothesis

An hypothesis refers to an experimental statement, tentative in nature, showing the relationship between two or more variables. It is open to test and can be accepted or rejected depending on whether it agrees or disagrees with the statistical test.

The study will test the validity of the following hypothesis:

  • H0: Broadcasting media has helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria to a low extent.
  • H1: Broadcasting media has helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria to a high extent.

1.6 Significance of the Study

The study tends to provide information on child trafficking and labour in the country. Also the need to address the Nigerian mass media encumbrances in their bid to fight the menace.

The research will be of immense help to guardians, parents, and children the nation and the entire world. The causes and measures to tackle these mysterious vices will be treated.

The study will help people understand how ungodly the menace is and the bad image it has created to Nigerians especially at times like this when the country is leading a crusade on re-branding the image of the nation.

The work among other things will go a long way in protecting the destinies of our children and the research shall serve as a referential material to other researcher who would like to embark on similar research work in due course.


1.7 Scope of the Study

This study focuses on examining if the broadcasting media has been campaigning against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria. This study will also examine the extent broadcasting media has helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria. This study will further examine if the campaign against child labour and trafficking by broadcast media has created awareness of the situation among citizens. This study shall be delimited to residents of Lagos State and 4 selected broadcasting media stations in the state.


1.8 Definition of Terms

Mass Media:

Sources of information and news such as newspaper, magazine, radio, television, internet, films that reach and influence the attitude and opinions of large people.

Child Trafficking:

The illegal sending away of children to foreign countries and within the country. Child abuse: It is a crime that harms a child in a physical, sexual or emotional way.

Campaign:

A series of activities that is well articulated planned and organized to achieve or accomplish a particular goal.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Summary

In this study, our focus was to assess the broadcast media in the campaign against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria using 4 selected broadcasting media stations in Lagos State as a case study. The study specifically was aimed at examining if the broadcasting media has been campaigning against child labour and human trafficking in Nigeria, examine the extent broadcasting media has helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria, examine if the campaign against child labour and trafficking by broadcast media has created awareness of the situation among citizens.This study was anchored on the Social Responsibility Theory and Agenda Setting Theory.

The study adopted the survey research design and conveniently enrolled participants in the study. A total of 141 responses were received and validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent are drawn from the staff of the sampled broadcasting media stations and residents of Ikeja, Lagos State.


5.2 Conclusion

Based on the finding of this study, the researcher concluded that broadcasting media has helped in the campaign against child labour and trafficking in Nigeria to a high extent.


5.3 Recommendations

In the light of the findings and conclusions, the following recommendations are hereby proposed:

  1. The press should draw more attention to the dangers of child trafficking on children’s day (May 27) and Christmas day (December 25) by given greater percentage on children in their editorials, features, public opinion and news in their various newspaper.
  2. The media should also undertake more investigate reporting in order to unearth all the hidden issues that could assist in apprehending and punishing those behind this child trafficking. The security agents should also be more alive to their duties of protecting lives and property. Anybody found guilty of child trafficking should be made to face the full wrath of the law to serve as deterrent to others.
  3. In today’s global village concept, it is expected that the media should rise to the challenge of meeting with the idea of covering or reporting issues concerning children which include evils of child trafficking, in fact report what happens to children in Africa, Asia America, and all over the world.
  4. Governments should invest in education and provide alternative economic opportunities for children. This will greatly reduce the number of those that will be available for trafficking. Countries should be encouraged to take action against this crime at the national level first, supported by international bodies. There should be severe penalty for traffickers at home and at the destination countries. Basic rights of the victims of trafficking must be respected bearing in mind their special needs and predicament. The press should raise awareness about migration related risks and monitoring migration trends within and between countries.
  5. There should be a renewed campaign on the importance of the family, good family name and de-emphasis on materialism. Religious institutions should join United Nations Children Education Fund (UNICEF), National Agency for Prohibition and Trafficking in Persons and Other Related Matters (NAPTIP), Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and the media to condemn the inhumane crime on child trafficking within and outside Nigeria.
  6. Government (political will, legislation and funding) United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), National Agency for Prohibition and Trafficking in Persons and Other Related Matters (NAPTIP), Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs), International Labour Organization (ILO) and Publics should put more force in the fight against child trafficking, that is, showing a strong commitment to combat trafficking. However, the awareness of child trafficking should be translated into action especially by the media at the grassroots level.
  7. The media should put more attention in the fight against trafficking and human labour because many families and children will be dependent on the media to inform and educate them about the danger of child trafficking. Open discussion on child protection issue by civil society and media engagement can change attitudes that condone child trafficking, also raising awarenesson the effect of child trafficking on health and education of the child will help alleviate children’s vulnerability to trafficking.
  8. To curtail the incidence of child trafficking and human labour, there is the need to increase societal awareness of issues that may affect children. Prevention of child trafficking can be done by changing those individual and community attitude, belief and circumstances which allows trafficking to occur. A well focused mass media campaign or educational programme has the potential to contribute successfully to community education and prevention of child trafficking and neglect. This is in realization of the fact that the media play significant role in informing people’s attitude and behaviour

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