Yusuf Idris, Kaduna
Association for the Blinds in Kaduna North Local Government Area of Kaduna, Northwest Nigeria state has called on the state government to release over one hundred and forty of their members that were arrested on the streets.
The Public Relations Officer of the group, Mallam Sadiku Ahmad made the call while addressing Journalists at the Nigeria Union of Journalists Secretariat, Kaduna.
He lamented that their members were arrested by the security agents and taken to a Hajj camp in Mando, in lgabi Local Government area of the state.
According to him, more than eight hundred Persons Living with Disability have been chased out of the state by the security operatives.
“The action was precipitated by Kaduna state government. Our members were not only maltreated, but also forced out of the house using security agents with guns”. He said.
Some of their leaders explained that they are also indigenes of the state.
“We have been living in Kaduna state for the past 30 to 40 years. Some of the political appointees and some of those holding political offices were born before our eyes, so we’re indigenes.
“We don’t have any other place to go and it is sad and also unfortunate for government to eject us from our house without giving us any other alternative,” they said.
The group appealed to the government to be compassionate, and also provide them with means of livelihood and accommodation.
According to them, begging is not a business enterprise, adding that they are in it not because they like it but because of the circumstances they find themselves in, and therefore appealed to government to provide them opportunities to learn skills that would enable them cater for themselves and their families.
Reacting on the issue, the Commissioner for Human Services and Social Development, Hafsat Mohammad Baba said the state government had already banned street begging and anyone found engaging in it will be arrested.
She further explained that the baggers poorly utilized the accommodation given to them which left the government with no option than to send them out of the house and demolished it.
Hajiya Hafsat Baba lamented that the beggars’ contributed negativity to child abuse and dirty environment.