By Stanley Onyekwere
As part of its renewed commitment to rid the Federal Capital City (FCC) of nuisance and enhance security in the Territory, the FCT Administration has apprehended over 150 street beggars.
Chairman, FCTA Ministerial Taskforce on City Sanitation, Comrade Ikharo Attah, made the disclosure while briefing newsmen, after a combined operations with other relavant agencies, yesterday in Abuja.
It was gathered that the agencies involved in the operation are; the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) and Social Development Secretariat (SDS).
Attah explained that the FCTA had observed with dismay the alarming rate of beggars in the city throughout the Ramadan period due to high level of arms giving and charity by individual and corporate organisations.
He said: “In the last two days over 150 beggars have been apprehended across the city and more arrest is still going on”.
According to him, those apprehended were taken to the Bwari Area Council Center for Rehabilitation, adding that FCT have a functional rehabilitation and training centre for such persons.
“Sadly, very few of them stay there and get full rehabilitation, while many others find their way to run and sometimes they request to be allow to go back to their states.
“But what is very fundamental and cardinal some of this persons are being brought by other persons into the FCT. You will see young people guarding blind aged men, we felt that is not what the city should be.
“We also felt for them that is why the FCTA is investing resources to train them. However, we are targeting very strongly the syndicate that always bring them to into Abuja in large number from states across the country.
“We realized that the syndicate drop them at strategic positions in town to make money for them. FCT is going all out to get them and ensure that they are prosecuted”, Attah stressed.
On his part, Head of AEPB’s Monitoring and Inspection, Kaka Bello, begging was nuisance related, adding that AEPB was determined to rid the city of all kinds of environmental nuisance.
He explained that the activities of beggars was a kind of nuisance that was suppose to be abated, assuring that the operation would be sustain.
We have a matching order by the FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Bello to ensure that the movement of beggars within the city is check and stop.
“That is why we are working all round both day and night to ensure that no beggar is allow to move in the city,” Bello said.