My boss gives them drugs which causes their stomach to swell — Man arrested for using children with fake stomach tumour to beg for alms in Lagos

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A middle-aged man, Onyedinka Esiala, has been caught using children suffering from fake stomach tumour to beg for alms in Lagos State.

Esiala, from Enugu Sate, was exposed by a passerby identified as Benefit, at Mile 2 area of the state on Wednesday, September 28, 2022. While speaking with Vanguard, the suspect claimed that his alleged boss, Uche, initiated the scam and gives the children unknown drugs to make their stomachs swell.

He alleged that Uche brings kids to Lagos every year he travels to the Eastern part of the country. “My name is Onyedinka and I am from Enugu State. My oga is Uche. When I came from the village, I did not get any work to do; then he told me to be helping him to be taking these children out for begging.

"Whenever I am about to take the kids from Orile to Mile 2 pedestrian bridge, my Oga will give them drugs though I don’t know the name of the medicines which will make their stomach get swollen for some hours, and the kids’ mothers are aware of the business. Their mothers stay in the village.

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The children were staying with them in the village before they gave them to my Oga to come to Lagos. The girls are not my sisters, but their mother often brings them to my Oga. Some kids stay a year with us, and half of the money made from begging is sent to their mothers in the village. My Oga does give them black drugs. I don’t know the name of the drugs. My Oga did not tell me the name but it’s a black drug.

My Oga brought one of the kids last year December while the other girl has spent three months with us. There is a boy among them but did not come today because he is not feeling too well. We do not come every day. We sometimes come three times in a week.”

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However, after thorough questioning, Oyedinka was taken to the Nigeria Police Station Area E, Festac and handed over to the police for further interrogation.

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