Beggars in Abuja shun rehabilitation, return to streets

Beggars in Abuja shun rehabilitation, return to streets

- Hundreds of beggars in Abuja have returned to the streets after being evacuated by the Abuja Environmental Protection Board

- The beggars could be seen begging for alms along the Zuba-Kubwa highway, Wuse and other parts of the FCT

- The board said that over 861 homeless people, including beggars, were removed from the streets between January and April 2018

After being evacuated from the streets by the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) and taken to the Bwari rehabilitation centre, the beggars in their hundreds have returned to the roads to beg for alms.

Many of these beggars have returned to the Zuba-Kubwa highway, Wuse, Jabi and other parts of Abuja to continue begging for alms, Punch reports. notes that the beggars, most of whom were from the northern states, could not withstand the discipline and strict rules at the rehabilitation centre.

According to the AEPB deputy director, Nasir Danmallam, over 861 homeless people, including beggars, were removed from the streets between January and April 2018.

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Reacting to the return of the beggars to the streets, he said that the AEPB was aware of the situation and was working towards ridding the FCT of miscreants and other undesirable elements.

Danmallam said: “In January, we removed 210 beggars from the streets and sent 37 for rehabilitation. In February, we removed 192 persons and took 38 to Bwari for rehabilitation, while some of them were repatriated to their home states by the social development secretariat.

“In March 78 beggars were taken for rehabilitation out of 281 that was evacuated from the streets and in April, 178 were arrested and 75 were taken for rehabilitation while the rest were either sent back to their states or handed over to their family members.

“We have been seeing pockets of them (beggars) and when we get them the second time, we take them to Bwari rehabilitation centre. They are very aggressive; some of them have stabbed our boys in the course of arresting them. The public also show unnecessary sympathy so we have obstruction from the members of the public."

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Meanwhile, previously reported that the Senate ordered security agencies in the FCT to get rid of beggars, prostitutes and the destitute from the streets of the Nigerian capital, Abuja.

This was disclosed by the chairman, Senate committee on FCT, Senator Dino Melaye, at a media briefing in Abuja on Thursday, February 23, 2017.

Melaye informed journalists that his committee invited the police commissioner and commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to brief them about the growing insecurity in the FCT and the need to take steps to curb the trend.

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