The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) on Tuesday said it evacuated 3,000 mentally challenged persons from the streets of Abuja between 2019 and 2023.
Sani Amar-Rabe, Director, Department of Social Welfare Services of the Social Development Secretariat (SDS) of FCTA, made this known in an interview in Abuja.
“From 2019 to 2023, no fewer than 3,000 mentally challenged persons were removed from the streets of Abuja. Yet, every day you will see new faces in the city,” he said.
He added, “We have in our records pictures of all of them who were taken back to their respective states of origin, especially those whose condition is irredeemable.”
Mr Amar-Rabe said the administration takes those with physical health challenges to hospitals for treatment to get their proper information.
He said their efforts were supported by the Nigeria Police Force, especially the police divisions in the FCT.
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“Presently, we have no fewer than 100 mentally challenged persons ranging from people with depression and drug addicts and their likes who are made to undergo psychosocial therapy.”
Mr Amar-Rabe said those better off were introduced to vocational and rehabilitation training to complete their rehabilitation scheme.
The director said the social welfare department, supported by the Mandate Secretary for the Social Development Secretariat, Hadiza Kabir, is working assiduously to rid the city of all kinds of human and environmental nuisances.
“When we ascertain the health condition of the abandoned children, we hand them over to the Department of Gender and Child Welfare Services for upkeep,” he added.
Mr Amar-Rabe said the department had renewed the fight against street hawking, mostly children of people displaced by the insurgency in the North-East and banditry in the North-West.
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