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Residents Distressed by Rising Tide of Underage Alms Seekers From IDP Camps in Sokoto State

The streets of Sokoto metropolis have become a poignant tableau of hardship, as an increasing number of underage children, most of whom hail from the ranks of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), traverse the urban landscape, pleading for alms in their struggle for survival.

The surge in their presence is an unfortunate byproduct of the escalating insecurity that has plagued the Eastern Senatorial District of the state, compelling residents to flee their homes out of fear of armed banditry. This unfolding crisis has compelled displaced families to send their youngest members, aged between three and eight years, onto the streets in search of sustenance.

Boys and girls alike, these children now wander the thoroughfares of Emir Yahya, Bello Way, Sahara, Manna, Aliyu Jodi, among others, their innocence juxtaposed with the harsh realities they face daily.

Abdullahi, a three-year-old, along with his six-year-old brother, Ibrahim, illustrated the heartbreaking narrative. Their mother, they revealed, had dispatched them to scavenge for food in the unforgiving urban landscape. Their father had already relocated to Gusau, leaving their mother reliant on the benevolence of society, just as her children now are.

In light of this grim situation, voices within the state, such as Mallam Nuhu Ibrahim, have beseeched authorities at all levels to take immediate action. The dire circumstances underscore the urgency of addressing the root causes of insecurity, particularly in the Sokoto East Senatorial District, in order to restore stability and provide these vulnerable children with a chance at a brighter future.

Mallam Nuhu Ibrahim articulated the plea: “The burgeoning IDP population in the state is a direct consequence of insecurity in certain areas, and we implore our government, particularly the federal government, to intervene decisively in resolving this crisis. Once security is restored, many of these children, currently found on the streets, can return to their homes and resume their education, ensuring a hopeful path ahead for them.”


Ademola Adeyemi

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