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Streetism: Ghana repatriates over 1,000 Nigerien beggars

Nigeriens being repatriated to their home country

Nigeriens being repatriated to their home country

At least 1,320 Nigeriens have been repatriated from Ghana as part of measures to deal with the high rate of streetism, especially in Accra, an official statement said.

Dubbed “operation get off the street,” the exercise is part of measures to deal with the high rate of streetism.

“The Embassy of Niger in collaboration with the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) and other relevant stakeholders have repatriated a total of 1,320 Nigeriens to their home country,” the Gender, children and social protection ministry said in a statement on Saturday (25 June).

“The country’s current ‘street children’ prevalence is extremely worrying. This literally put their lives at risk so long as they remain on the street,” the statement said.

Below is the full statement:

Street beggars situation in Accra

At least 60% of beggars on the streets of Ghana are foreigners, the executive director of Child Rights InternationalBright Appiah has said.

Talking to Kwaku Nhyira-Addo on The Asaase Breakfast Show, Appiah called on the authorities to arrest those recruiting and trafficking children to use as tools to beg on the streets.

“I can say on authority that 60% of people who beg on our streets are foreigners and our findings also point to the fact that not all of them who beg on the streets are not in school.

“Majority of them are in school, but what they do is that when they are on vacation in their respective countries, they come to Ghana to engage in that kind of activity, so on that score I feel that it is a trade, something that is intentionally done to gain some kind of economic support,” Appiah said.

He added: “And once it becomes a trade, then you should know that there are a number of people who are engaged in the process, you cannot just say that the children and their parents alone will come and go. It means there is a supply chain in the engagement of such act.”

Appiah further called on the Ghana Immigration Service to step up efforts in clamping down on the activities of persons behind such act.

Fred Dzakpata

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