Oyo State governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi on Sunday warned against street begging, saying that his administration will criminalise street begging.
Speaking at the 2nd General Assembly of the Muslim Ummah of South West Nigeria (MUSMEN) with the theme: “Zakaah and Poverty Alleviation” in Ibadan yesterday, he said if Zakaah was well implemented, there was no need for people to go begging.
“We have been trying to send them away from the streets. As early as 6am you will see them coming down from buses from other states and in the evening they will return to their various states,” he said.
The governor who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Alhaji Ismael Olalekan Alli said many of the beggars hide under begging to carry out criminal activities.
According to him, the state government has put in place the agricultural initiative programme with a view to ensuring that there is job for everybody.
The governor who called for the support of religious leaders and security agencies in the war against street begging, said “Islam abhors begging, we should always be our brother’s keepers.”
He lamented that most of the street beggars came from other states of the federation on daily basis.
He called on the people to always support government programmes and activities as they were in the best interest of the masses.
Speaking on “Zakaah and Poverty Alleviation”, the guest speaker, Alhaji Femi Abbas who said poverty was allien to the people of south west, lamented that Zakaah which was aimed at reducing poverty had been neglected by the Muslims.
Abbas who noted that poverty was self-inflicted, said it had led to insecurity and corruption.