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Lagos Govt. removes 128 mentally challenged persons, others from streets

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

As part of efforts to rid Lagos of all forms of environmental nuisance, the State Government has taken no fewer than 128 mentally challenged persons, beggars, and other destitute away from major roads, bridges and streets for onward rehabilitation.

As gathered, the 128 persons including males and females were rescued by the Rescue and Rehabilitation department from different areas in Lagos that were considered not conducive for habitation.

The State government, in collaboration with the Nigerian Police, Man ‘O’ War, and other voluntary organisations stormed Mushin, Fadeyi, Yaba, Lekki, and Sabo axis of Lagos to rescue beggars as well as destitute and vulnerable people from the streets, under bridges, uncompleted buildings and other places unfit for human habitation.

Announcing the number of persons rescued on Monday, the Head of Rehabilitation and Rescue Department for the State Ministry of Youth and Social Development, Olutoyin Jaiyeola, said that the aim was to ensure that they live like other members of the society.

Through a statement made available to newsmen, Jaiyeola reiterated the state government’s stance on zero tolerance on street begging, conversion of public facilities to house by destitute and others in Lagos.

Earlier, Commissioner for Youth and Social Development, Olusegun Dawodu, while addressing pressmen, listed the motive for the plan, and modus operandi of the special team set up to rescue beggars, destitute and vulnerable persons across the state.

His words: “As a responsible and responsive government, the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu led-administration will not fold its arms and watch the State become a haven for beggars.”

“Street begging is a social vice that we cannot afford to watch attain uncontrollable level before we act; otherwise, all the good plans and programs to transform our dear State would be adversely affected, which is same with street hawking.”

True to its words of ensuring that Lagos is rid of all forms of environmental nuisance, the State Ministry of Youth and Social Development has begun ridding the street of beggars and destitute persons.

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