The Menace Of The Child Street Beggars In Accra – The phenomenon of child beggars besieging some streets of the capital of Ghana, Accra and harassing pedestrians and motorists for money is on the rise.
Most of these kids are from some of the slum communities in Accra and West and Central Africa.
These kids can mostly be seen at Okponglo Traffic Light, ShiaShie Traffic Light, The Accra Mall, Graphic Road, Lapaz, Airport Junction, areas around Movenpick Hotel to mention a few.
The old style was kids leading adults; mostly blind or crippled, using a cane or wheelchair to solicit money. Now the kids have taken over the act/business of begging and exposing theirselves to dangers.
These kids have mastered the act such that some prey on the emotions of commuters to get money and sympathy from them.
They use tricks such as presenting a pitiful face in the hope of convincing commuters to part some few cedis away to them.
Some resort to grabbing and holding passerby’s in the arms and legs till they get what they want.
They’re mostly cladded in replica jerseys of some of the top European teams. The foreigners have quickly learnt the local dialect (Twi) in other to help them do their bidding.
The shocking thing is that some of the parents of these kids relax under shades closer to where the kids do the begging and they send their kids, some as young at 2 years to beg for alms.
All these happen in the presence of intense vehicular traffic.
Some also of the kids also get inhumane treatments from impatient and quick tempered passerby’s like knocks, slaps and kicks.
This is a clear case of exploitation and as contained in the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child and Section 87(1-2) of the Child Acts, 1998 (Act 560), prohibits exploitative child labour.
Apart from being denied education, they run the risk of being knocked down by vehicles.
Could it be the case that these kids are trafficked into the country to do the bidding for the traffickers?
Children involved in alms begging is a phenomenon that must not be allowed to persist.
What are city authorities doing about this?
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