Lekki-Ajah residents agonise over beggars, hoodlums

Almost eight months after the immediate past Commissioner of Police, Lagos State Command, now retired Assistant Inspector General Hakeem Odumosu promised to rid the Lekki area of Lagos State of hoodlums and robbers in beggars’ robe, residents of the area have again pleaded with Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to come to their aid as a matter of urgency.

The Tabloid.net gathered that Odumosu, in August 2021, had vowed to go after the hoodlums, according to a statement by the Police Public Relations Officer, Adekunle Ajisebutu, a Chief Superintendent of Police.

He said: “As concerned, dutiful and very responsible police officers saddled with the statutory responsibility of internal security, we are not oblivious of the apparent security challenges posed by miscreants masquerading as beggars in some parts of the country particularly in Lagos State.

“In view of the foregoing, the command is urgently interfacing, and indeed working in tandem with the State Ministry of Youth and Social Development as well as other relevant authorities to solve this social malaise.

“In reaction to the specific plight of the residents of Lekki and Ajah axis, the Commissioner of Police, CP Hakeem Odumosu whose primary concern is to provide robust security for the teeming people of Lagos State, has directed the Area Commander, DPOs, other field and tactical commanders to immediately embark on 24 hrs stop and search and vehicular patrol of every nook and cranny of the affected axis and similar areas requiring additional police presence.”

The people are, however, currently lamenting that there is no respite, claiming that the hoodlums have returned to the roads.

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A resident, who pleaded anonymity, said: “The boys and these beggars are back in large numbers and more vicious than they were last year. Today, they storm the streets to harrass innocent motorists any time from 6pm. Their mode of operation is to come near your car in traffic. Sometimes, these beggars (aged between 4 and 14 years) spray your windscreen with soapy water without cleaning the screen to distract you and ask you to wind down your glass, so that the older ones can attack you. We all live in fear of these boys and street beggars everyday.”

Another resident, who identified himself simply as Chucks, called on Governor Sanwo-olu, a former resident of Lekki, to act now and ensure that the Lekki-Ajah area is rid of the bad boys and beggars/miscreants.

“I think the governor needs to act now. The people are already insinuating that he is keeping quiet because of his second term ambition, that he does not want to offend the area boys. Some are even saying that he not is doing anything to rescue the situation because of the presidential ambition of Bola Tinubu. (Simply because of Northern support.)”I don’t really know how long we have to endure this pains when even states in the north are already evacuating beggars from their streets, while Lagos State Government is allowing them on the street of Lagos” Chucks lamented.

Supporting this claim, another resident said there is a need for the state government and the police to act quickly before beggars and hoodlums take over the entire Lekki-Ajah axis.

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According to her, residents daily live in fear of attacks, adding “They are no respecter of anybody. In traffic, your heart skips anytime you see them. And to make matters worse, they don’t show any fear as they move from one vehicle to another with their vicious looks and threats. Please, help to call on the police and the Lagos State government to come to our rescue.”

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