By Mohammad Ibrahim
Kaduna (Nigeria) — Security operatives guarding Kaduna State Government House were on high alert Monday, as protesting beggars stormed the premises demanding the governor to withdraw the anti – begging law in the state.
The beggers were protesting against the anti-begging law which the governor assented to last week.
The beggars were matching towards the government house in their hundreds to express their grievance.
On spotting the beggars, security personnels comprising of mobile police and policemen quickly mobilized and blocked them from gaining entrance into the premises.
An Amoured Personnel Carrier was equally stationed at the entrance a few meters away from the main gate, while men of the Nigerian Police Force who arrived in eight Hilux vehicles took strategic positions around the premises carrying guns and tier gas with a view to forestalling outbreak of law and order.
Spokesperson of the Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD) Muntari Saleh accused the governor of nonchalant attitude towards people living with disability.
“We demand that the governor of the state, Malam Nasir El-Rufai and members of the State House of Assembly to fulfill the promises they made to us during their campaign while seeking for votes from us.
“The Governor promised us that he will not ban street begging until he makes adequate arrangement for our upkeep and welfare.
“He promised that 30 per cent of our members would be giving employment anytime the state government has a programme running, which has not been met,
“He also promised to provide for the sick, educate our children and employ those in different skills with a view to easing the suffering of the people living with disability.
“This law was passed in Kano, Edo and Lagos states, as well as the FCT and they did not succeed, the government has not made adequate arrangements for us and yet it wants to ban us from our only source of livelihood.
“We are human beings like everyone, the way everybody is delivering children, that is the same way we are, the way people marry is the way we marry and the way parents try to eduactate thier children is the same way we try to educate ours.
“He promised to employ our children, unfortunately, he has employed people in the Kaduna State Traffic and Environmental Law Enforcement Agency (KASTELEA), but none of our children were employed.
“He also employed street sweepers, and none of our children were employed, that they employed women to cook food for state school feeding programme, yet none of our wives or children have benefited,” he said.
Governor El-Rufai’s representative, Special Assistant on Stakeholders Matters, Abdullahi Bayero explained that the governor was in a meeting and appealed to the protesting beggars to be patient as five people were selected to go in and table their demands to the state governor.