Kano: Scavenger camps to pose more security challenges for Nigeria

These are scavengers within the city center of Kano, Sabon Gari. Some of
these children are from neighboring states while others are indigenes of
Kano.

It is the early hours of Monday. When their mates are in school but these
Youths are making a live from this refuse dump.

Aminu Salisu is the eldest among these boys and he is just 16 years old.
Salisu said he was a troublesome boy while growing up and this prompted
his parents to take him to a remand home in Kano. He escaped after some
weeks and came to the dumpsite which he now sees as his home.

Salisu said life without scavenging is a wasted one. Other children like
him pick up items from other dumpsites and water waves. For them, this is
the life they致e chosen and they have no other option.

Amidst the search, they get caught by security agencies. Some are arrested
and detained while those who are lucky are asked to go but that does not
stop them from doing what they refer to as their only source of
livelihood.

After a long walk and a hectic search for sellable items, they rest on the
dumpsites and spend hours there with a sachet of water. Whenever sales are
high, they make N200 per day and N50 when it is low.

At the moment, they appear to be happy but that is after they must have
taken drugs. To anyone that looks closely, it will appear as if some of
them are taking water but if you look closely, what they are holding
are sachets of hard drugs like Solution, Tramadol among others.

This young boy says his name is Diny Boy. He claimed that he left his
parents in search of money to settle the debt he owes. Dino sleeps here at
the refuse dump and he has not gone home for five weeks.

In this camp, there are different stories for different children. For
Alli, he knows no other home apart from this place. He has been here for
six years. He claimed he is tired of his parents lifestyle as he plans to
go back to apologize to his parents.

When these boys have less work to do, they get at each other which lead to
physical combat most times.

To ensure peace within the group, this is what the leader does.

For now, life may not mean so much to these boys as they continue to live
on the streets in search for better ways of making a living.

(8146)

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