Posted by Garba Ahmed, Kaduna | 12 July 2015 | 3,527 times
Physically challenged beggars in Kaduna State yesterday threatened legal action against the state government for alleged defamation of character and violation to their right to life.
One Abdullahi Jugunu led the beggars to storm Kaduna Secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) where they arrived in loaded buses that included men, women and children. Jugunu said the ban on street begging and hawking in the state was a step in error, insisting that they ought to have been consulted before the pronouncement.
The ban by Governor Nasir El-Rufai came hours after the Tuesday’s explosion in Sabon Gari area in Zaria.
The government said the move was spurred by the need for enhanced security of lives and properties in the state.
But the beggars are faulting the government’s decision, insist that they are stakeholders in the land, and would have been duly consulted.
They said through their leader, Jugunu: “Apart from feeling insulted, we will be seeking legal redress against the government, first for defamation of character.
“The ban which came only after the Zaria blast is a subtle way of calling us terrorists. Our right to life is now under threat because our existence is hinged on begging activities on the streets.
“We are giving the authorities three days to rescind their decision or risk been victims of a spell we would profess against them.
“Our promise for now is that we will be returning to the streets for our normal business.”
•Photo by Garba Ahmed shows physically challenged beggars during the protest against El-Rufai’s ban on street begging . . . Saturday in Kaduna.
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