This Is What Boko Haram Insurgency Has Turned Widows, Elderly Victims Into
Men and women have reportedly taking to begging on the streets of Borno and Yobe states following the incessant attacks by Boko Haram which has left many homeless.
Leadership reports that a large number of women who lost their husbands in the ongoing insurgency have been forced into begging as they go from office to office, or position themselves in front of eateries and shopping centres and beseech any person that comes around for alms to feed themselves and their children.
The male folk are not left out, as they have also become circumstantial beggars. Some aged villagers position themselves near military checkpoints and take advantage of vehicles being stopped for routine checks to ask for alms.
Speaking with one of the women who lost her husband to the insurgency, Ya’ana Mustapha, about 30 years old said her house and her husband’s petty provision shop in Benisheik was burnt down. She has 6 children to cater for.
“I don’t have anything to do than come to Maiduguri to ask for alms, since no one has asked for my hand in marriage,” she said.
Another helpless elderly man, Masta’a Goni said, “We cannot go to farm because the insurgents have taken over the bush – no one can go to farm again; in some places, people did not farm in the last one year, so there is hunger now.”
It was gathered from sources that some of the old men and women were once responsible persons being catered for by their children in their various homes before the Boko Haram gunmen destroyed their homes and livelihood. Most of them either lost their bread winners or were chased out of their community.
According to a soldier near a checkpoint along the Kano-Maiduguri highway, they over a 100 that gather at the checkpoint daily, begging all day.
Boko Haram has been wrecking havoc in parts of the country especially in Borno and the government has been fighting hard to curb this menace.
The country is making efforts to locate over 200 girls who were abducted in Chibok, Borno by the insurgents on April 14.
Report recently surfaced that no fewer than 20 young women from three clustered nomadic settlement were abducted on Thursday June 5, by suspected Islamist Boko Haram group near Chibok.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian military reportedly killed about 50 Boko Haram sect members over the weekend in a foiled attack on villages in Borno and Adamawa states.
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