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Corporate begging in Abuja, another threat to security as economic hardship persists



Corporate begging in Abuja, another threat to security as economic hardship persists

Nigerians have decried the current economic hardship in the country under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari despite claims by the government that over one million citizens have been lifted out of poverty.

For many Nigerians, feeding the family has become a herculean task in recent times as the prices of food items continue to increase in fast progression.

As is evident, widespread bandit attacks, ethnic clashes and kidnappings for ransom in rural areas has greatly affected agricultural activities in the country.

A market survey by TIM NIGERIA on Tuesday showed that food and commodity prices in the market witnessed a sharp increase unlike what it was in past weeks.

At Utako market, the cost of food items, mostly Nigerian staples, doubled in prices, leaving buyers and sellers frustrated.

A crate of eggs that used to sell for N1000 now goes for N1600, one packet of spaghetti, formerly sold at N200 now goes for N350.

A basket of Irish potatoes now sells at N2,000 from 1500. Maize, Garri, beans, tomatoes, Tomatoes, pepper, beans, Garri, have also all doubled in prices.

Njideka, a middle-aged woman, who spoke to our reporter in Utako market said she was worried that her family will be negatively affected by the high cost of food items and other commodities as she could no longer afford the basics with her meagre budget.

She lamented that food rations in her home has been reduced to the barest and three square meals, no longer guaranteed for her family because of the cost of beans, eggs and potatoes.

“Going to the market these days is heartbreaking. You cannot boast of buying enough things even with N10,000. Buhari should do something, this is becoming worse.” She lamented.

Madam Gloria, a fish seller told TIM NIGERIA that sales have reduced exponentially as buyers keep complaining of the increase in prices.

She said a piece of Titus fish which used to go for N1200 now sells for N1600 while Chicken now sells at N1800 per kilo.

She appealed to the federal government to help salvage the situation and put a stop to the inflation in food prices as this may lead to hunger in the land and an increase in crime rates.

Corporate Begging

Unfortunately, the increase in hardship in the country and the unemployment of Nigerian youths have not only resulted in more crime but also a hike another form of vice among able-bodied youths, especially in the FCT.

TIM NIGERIA found that the FCT is presently overwhelmed by corporate beggars who visit recreation parks, airports and restaurants begging other Nigerians for money.

Corporate begging is another form of extortion by lazy individuals who prey on the emotions and sympathy of unsuspecting passersby to request help.

Although this trend has been in existence for a long time, it has continued to thrive and increase following the economic hardship in the country.

Some say the corporate beggers thrive because it is often difficult to really decipher when you are helping someone in genuine need or just being extorted by tricks and lies.

Corporate beggers are always well-dressed women or men, who appear decent and present themselves as individuals genuinely in need of assistance.

They often accost other well dressed and responsible people, narrating a fake ordeal of how stranded or lost they are.

Some even tell tales of family members in emergency situations in the hospital or other sordid details aimed at one’s emotions.

They are often seen at office complexes, malls, recreation parks, hospital premises, airports, restaurants motor parks and in front of banks.

Asked if he has noticed the rise of beggars in the FCT in recent times, Adebayo, an FCT resident said corporate begging has become a new career for some people as many now prefer to beg than work legitimately for their income.

He, however, blamed the harsh economic realities of the country for the trend.

“Yes, I’ve seen how people just walk up to you at a restaurant begging for transport fare home, money to eat. You also see them, at bus stops. This is disturbing because very soon stealing will increase in this our country.”

Appealing to the government, he said measures should be put in place to checkmate the prices of food items in the market and punish those causing inflation.

Meanwhile, the Chairman, FCT Ministerial Committee on City Sanitation, Ikharo Attah recently told TIM NIGERIA that the FCT was in the process of clearing the city of every illegality that could pose a threat to residents including beggars.

He said, ‘’The sad thing is that people come into the city in large numbers to beg and most of them live in very deplorable neighbourhoods and shanties.

‘’For people to come and line up in large numbers at traffic interchanges or traffic junctions and some of them have children running after people’s cars, begging for money, knocking on peoples cars and all these acts infringe on other people’s privacy, and from our judgment constitute a nuisance and largely inappropriate and so we will remove them.

President Buhari on his part, recently claimed that insecurity, flood and middlemen were to blame for the inflation in food prices in the country.

He had assured Nigerians that his administration was doing its best and will not relent till they proffer a solution.

Despite the promises by the government, fear, hardship, lack, crime, insecurity, poor hospital services, kidnappings now appear to be the lot of many Nigerians.

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Cholera outbreak in Cross River Community claims 51 lives



The death toll from the Cholera outbreak in Ekureku, Abi Local Government Area, Cross River State, has risen from 20 on Saturday to 51 on Monday.

Bernard Egbe, the clan head of the community, stated this when he received Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate Sandy Onor, who was in the community to sympathise with them.



The clan chief, who described the situation as unfortunate, stated that many people infected with the disease were being treated at various health facilities in the area.

He went on to say that four of the victims being treated were in critical condition.

He stated that they had received assistance from WHO, UNICEF, and state government officials.

The cholera outbreak, which began on Thursday, affected ten villages in the Ekureku clan, he said.





Mr Onor, the PDP governorship candidate, said he felt the people’s pain but urged them to remain hopeful.

He stated that if elected, he would ensure that the people of the state have safe drinking water.
He gave cash as a consolation prize to each of the Ekureku community’s ten affected villages.




Meanwhile, Janet Ekpeyong, the Director-General of the state Primary Healthcare Development Agency, stated on Sunday that the state government is on top of the situation.





She stated that the government had used both human and material resources to stop the spread of the disease.

“The state Government has deployed a response team together with representatives from the World Health Organisation, the Nigerian Red Cross and Wash Programme.






“The combined team have all intervened accordingly and helped to save lives and prevent further spread of the disease,” she stated.







A case of the disease has also been reported in a remote village in the state’s Odukpani Local Government Area.

Iwara Iwara, Permanent Secretary in the state Ministry of Health, confirmed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday.







Mr Iwara stated that the outbreak was reported on Sunday night and that the government had sent men and materials to the area.






READ ALSO:Drama as Cross River State Governor locks out staff for late coming.

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Currency hawkers selling scarce new naira notes at party venues.



Despite complaints that several bank branches had run out of the small quantities of the newly redesigned naira notes allocated to them by their head offices as early as 12 noon on Thursday, large wads of the new notes have saturated party venues, with hawkers charging N200 on N1,000.





On Thursday and Friday, journalists who visited banking halls in several cities across the country, particularly Lagos and Abuja, confirmed that there was a limited supply of the redesigned notes, as bank tellers mixed a few notes with the old ones for over-the-counter withdrawals, while automated teller machines continued to dispense old bank notes.






Further investigation revealed that several bank branches had yet to receive their new note allocations, with many bank officials informing our correspondents that the new notes were still on their way.

On the other hand, at a party in Ibadan, Oyo State, on Saturday, a woman was seen freely hawking newly redesigned wads of N200 bank notes.







However, officials at some of the bank branches that still had the new notes told reporters that each cashier was given N100,000 of the new N1,000 for onward disbursement to customers seeking over-the-counter payments, and that they do not yet have the N500 and N200 denominations.








Customers were also seen depositing old bills over the counter, while cashiers at bank branches were handing out more old naira notes.

Central Bank of Nigeria had earlier clarified on its website under currency management, that it is against the law to sell currency banknotes.








READ ALSO:Massive bombing by the Nigeria Air Force hits bandit hideouts, many killed.







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6 people dead, 25 injured in a ghastly road accident in Kogi state.



The Kogi Command of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) confirmed that six people were killed and 25 others were injured in an accident on the Okene-Ogori road on Saturday.

Mr Stephen Dawulung, Sector Commander in Lokoja yesterday, revealed that the lone accident involved an articulated vehicle carrying 45 people and cows.






According to the sector commander, the accident occurred around noon and killed some of the cows.

The victims of the accident were taken to Ageva General Hospital in Okene, Ajunko Clinic and Maternity in Ibilo, and Ogbagidi General Hospital in Okene, according to Dawulung.






He said: “When the accident, which involved an IVECO trailer conveying cows and 45 persons down South, occurred by a graveyard just a few kilometres to Ogori Magongo along Okene-Ogori road, Kogi, our officers and men were timely in response to it.”

“Our officers in conjunction with the Police and military personnel came to the rescue and rushed the injured to four different medical centres for medical treatment. The corpses of the dead have also been deposited at the morgue of the Ageva General Hospital, Okene.”







The accident, according to Dawulung, was caused by speed, which was uncontrollable at “a sharp bend.”

The sector commander, who described the incident as “sad and unfortunate,” stated that the command would continue to carry out speed, overloading, and mixed loading enforcement and education programs.











The sector commander, who described the incident as “sad and unfortunate,” stated that the command would continue to carry out speed, overloading, and mixed loading enforcement and education programs.

He defined mixed loading as the loading of goods and passengers in trucks and other vehicles designed solely to transport goods.

He advised motorists to maintain strict adherence to road traffic regulations at all times in order to avoid such calamitous incidents.










READ ALSO:Man shoots his step-father dead while testing charm in Adamawa state









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