Lagos begins clampdown on street beggars, hawkers

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The Lagos government has set up a special team to rid the state of street beggars and hawkers.

The Commissioner for Youth and Social Development, Mr Olusegun Dawodu, made this known on Wednesday at a news conference.

Dawodu said the Special Team is a brainchild of his ministry with the support of the police command and is on a mission to eradicate street begging and hawking, adding that the practices are of great concern to the state government.

 “The road to our desired destination of ‘A Greater Lagos’ has, among other man-made obstacles – ‘street begging.’

“Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu will not fold his arms and watch the state become a haven for beggars.

“This has become big business to some groups of people. Our investigation revealed that beggars and hawkers (children and adults) are transported regularly from other parts of the country to Lagos.

 “This is with the sole aim of doing this odious ‘business’ that demeans humanity and abuses innocence in the case of children, who are being pushed into this degrading trade,” the Commissioner said.

He added that the twin-problem was partly responsible for crimes in the state saying that some of the beggars and hawkers went about with dangerous weapons, assaulting and robbing innocent residents.

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