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Cablegate: Nigeria: Nomination for 2010 Women of Courage

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P 251721Z NOV 09
FM AMEMBASSY ABUJA
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RUEHOS/AMCONSUL LAGOS PRIORITY 2375
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UNCLAS ABUJA 002145

SIPDIS

STATE FOR AF/FO, AF/W, INR/AA, S/GWI

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL KWMN KPAO PHUM KTIP PINR NI
SUBJECT: NIGERIA: NOMINATION FOR 2010 WOMEN OF COURAGE
AWARD

REF: STATE 111471

1. U.S. Mission nominates Veronica K. Umaru for the 2010
Secretary's Award for International Women of Courage.

2. Mrs. Veronica Umaru serves as National Coordinator of
the Women Trafficking and Child Labor Eradication
Foundation (WOTCLEF). Under Mrs. Umaru's leadership,
WOTCLEF has undertaken awareness and advocacy activities to
draw attention to the plight of Nigerian women and children
trafficked for prostitution and child labor. WOTCLEF
serves as a model of a people-driven, non-governmental
organization.

3. Mrs. Umaru's expertise in advocacy, including media
outreach and enactment of legislation, has raised awareness
and mobilized citizens to fight human trafficking in their
communities. WOTCLEF has succeeded in influencing policy
change to address modern day slavery and human
trafficking. Beginning in 1999, WOTCLEF led Civil Society
groups to sponsor an anti-trafficking bill, ultimately
enacted in 2003, which established the Nigerian
Government's anti-trafficking agency, the National Agency
for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP).
This agency prosecutes traffickers and shelters, trains,
and re-integrates rescued victims, transforming them into
"survivors."

4. Popularly known as "Mummy" by many of her clients, Mrs.
Umaru also operates a shelter that provides refuge for
rescued young women for as long as six months. Besides
providing a nurturing environment, the shelter trains women
in skills that enhance their employment career options,
thereby reducing the possibility of resorting to
prostitution.

5. In the 2009 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report.
Nigeria attained Tier 1 ranking, only the second
Sub-Saharan African nation to do so. From before its
inception, Mrs. Umaru has served as the inspiration and
energy for NAPTIP and continues to work as an active
stakeholder in the agency's prevention, prosecution, and
protection efforts that have made a genuine difference in
the lives of women and children in Nigeria.

6. U.S. Mission, which has not yet informed Veronica K.
Umaru of this nomination, will forward additional details
when they become available. Mrs. Umaru is a Nigerian
citizen. Her office address is 22/24 Third Avenue, 34
Crescent, Gwarinpa, Nigeria, her cellular telephone number
is 234-0803-408-1183, and her e-mail address is
wotclef@yahoo.com.

7. The Mission's Point of Contact for this nomination is
Political Officer Ann Flynn (e-mail address:
flynnac@state.gov; office telephone number
011-234-9-461-4245).

SANDERS

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