The Monitoring team of the Lagos State Ministry of Youth and Social Development has rescued three infants and apprehended two women for using babies less than a month old for alms begging at Oyingbo area of Lagos State.
Lagos Metro gathered that the two women, namely, Hadiza Nosiru and Salamotu Salisu natives of Jigawa State were arrested during the routine rescue operation carried out by the Rescue Operation Team attached to the Ministry of Youth and Social Development and were subsequently taken to Rehabilitation and Training Centre at Majidun, Ikorodu for shelter, investigation and possible legal action against them.
According to the Lagos State Ministry of Youth and Social Development, preliminary investigation conducted further revealed that the two women apprehended were not the biological mothers of the babies and that the babies were given out to them by their parents who later get paid everyday on each baby.
One of the biological mothers of the infants paraded at Alausa, Ikeja, on Thursday alongside the three infants identified herself as Tawa Aregbesola from Ibadan. She confessed that she had an agreement with one of the impersonating mothers to take her baby for alms begging between 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. daily on the condition that between N1, 000 and N1, 500 would be given to her in return.
Aregbesola who says she has four other children said that she did not have an idea of where her baby is usually taken to for alms adding that she was oblivious of what the implication of the action could be.
Against the foregoing, the State Commissioner for Youth and Social Development, Pharmacist (Mrs.) Uzamat Akinbile-Yussuf said that efforts would be intensified to get rid of street begging in all areas across the state.
The Commissioner specifically expressed disappointment at the heartless practice of using newborn babies to beg denying them of proper care and breastfeeding and exposing them to hazards.