Editorial Team

Emmanuel Udom-Managing Editor, Stephen Dijo Philemon-Deputy Editor, Janet Udom-Senior Correspondent, Precious Udom-Senior Correspondent, Williams Ita-Bureau Chief(Akwa Ibom/Cross River), Fabian Idoko-Senior Correspondent
  • ABURIGHT NIGERIA COMPANY

    Manufacturer's Representative Import Export General Merchandise Contract Adress: Araromi Quarters, Owode Area, Ifo, Ogun state, Nigeria P.O.Box 2632, Oshiodi, Lagos Telephone: 2348166719412

    Sunday, 29 September 2013

    Sex, drugs and violence in a Lagos ghetto




                               
    For Babatunde Sunday, a bus conductor and resident of Agege in Lagos, life is about drugs, sex and violence. This young man, possibly in his early 30s is a notorious area boy in Isokoko area of Agege.
    He boasted last week at an illicit drink (paraga joint) located along the popular railway line at Pen cinema in Agege, Lagos that his world is powered by paraga and sex.
    According to him, before hitting the road with my commercial bus, popularly known as danfo, I must visit the nearest paraga joint, smoke a wrap or two of Indian hemp (Igbo) and top it up with any local alcoholic concoction. With these, I am ready for the hustles and bustles of the day.
    At the end of the day, I normally end up in one of the motels in the area, where commercial sex workers do business to unwind and relax with one or two rounds of sex, Sunday bragged in Yoruba language.
    However, independent investigations conducted by Nigerian Compass showed that here are lots and lots of Sundays in our ghettoes. Sex, nce, crime and drugs are the keys to the survival of social urchins, popularly known as area boys in our various ghettoes.
    Some illicit drink traders disclosed that a cup of locally brewed concoctions, popularly known as paraga is sold for between N30 - N50, a wrap of Indian hemp is sold for N50-N100 while the price for other hard drugs vary depending on the area and time.
    Agnes Essien, a commercial sex worker at a motel in Isokoko says she collects N500 for a 2-minute drop with condom, while all night service costs between N1500-N2500. Home service, she insisted is negotiable.
    Isokoko, from available records has an estimated population of 200,000 people, made of mostly Hausa traders in Lagos with a population of 18million.
    Our correspondent, who visited the area last week, observed that it is made up of 70% residential, 20% commercial and 10% industrial.
    However, illicit drug joints, beer palours, blackspots, guest houses and hotels seem to concentrate more on  Shiaba, Otubu, Keke, Olusanya, Alfa-Nla, Oniwaya, Gbogunleria and Akerele.
    A police source disclosed that night life is on the high side, since youths in Agege do gather in these areas to catch some fun.
    But, Oliver Amaechi, the divisional police officer of Isokoko police told our correspondent that assaults/fighting, illegal supply and use of illicit drugs, and theft of handbags, phones and other personal items were prevalent in the community.
     Speaking during a recent event held at Agege local government area in Lagos, the Isokoko DPO said that there are five principal divisions in the station manned by some 181 serving police officers.
    These are: divisional crime branch, juvenile and women center, operations, traffic and administration. Available date further revealed that fighting is high around Isale-Oja, while Akererele is saddled with drug related issues.
    However, with partnership between the government of Nigeria and Britain, there seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel.
    The Department of International Development and Justice-for-All, a non-governmental organization run by Josephine Chukwuma has adopted Isokoko police station as the model station in the community policing dream of the inspector-general of police.

    There is the Neighborhood policing, voluntary policing sector and community safety partnership in place, while plans are in top gear to establish the Isokoko Legal Advice Scheme in the community.
    About 40% of crimes committed in Isokoko areas are from the youths, even as DPO Amaechi disclosed that initially, residents of the area did not trust the police enough to tackle criminalities in the community.
    But, with the successes so far recorded by the police through the community policing project, it is clear that by 2015, all things being equal, Isokoko will have less crime and be more peaceful, while citizens and visitors to the area will be treated with dignity in accordance with human rights laws, the DPO said.
    The station, under Amaechi is planning to reduce crime tally by 10% and introduce more community policing strategies and initiatives before October 2013.

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