Although vehemently denied by the federal government, World Bank statistics and the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) hold that there are about 100million destitute in Nigeria. The question raised by this realisation is that who cares about this people even if they are just a handful?
As stipulated in the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria, it is one of the primary functions of the local governments to see to the plights of these people. Apart from that, there is also a Ministry of Women Affairs And Social Welfare in Ogun State, there is a department for rehabilitation only that, the facility for rehabilitation, a 2.2 acre land donated by the state government is still under construction in Orogbe Village, away in the outskirts of the state capital in the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic axis. For now, however, what the department does is to liaise with community leaders of migrant communities, most especially, to help keep their people from the streets.
The Director of the rehabilitation department in Abeokuta, in a casual “off record” chat had lamented that the bane of their work in rehabilitating the street beggars is that after giving medical attention to the ones requiring such, their families and guardians refuse to take them back, a form of social stigma that eventually leads the subjects back to a life of destitution on the streets.