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From Oyo to Lagos: A mother’s brisk business in Alausa 


Toyin Ajayi

Toyin Ajayi

A young mother and her child of about three years old yesterday made a brisk business of Lagosians begging for alms in Alausa, the seat of government.

The mother, who identified herself as Toyin Ajayi, suspected to have come from Oyo State, moved passers-by to sympathy as she cried that her child was dying. Wrapped in her arms, the child, Dolapo Ajayi, was sleeping.

Her choice of location was quite strategic. Right in front of the Lagos State Multipurpose Office Complex (under construction), opposite the Alausa Secretariat Second Gate, she indeed got some donations .

By 2pm, her collection bowl was already half full with naira notes of various denominations.

According to her, she is in Lagos (from Oyo) to see an aunt in Idumota, who had, however, relocated without trace. Amid tears, she said the aunt at-large was her only hope of getting the sick child treated.

When ask of the nature of Dolapo’s illness, she could only flag a prescription sheet, titled: Oyo State Hospital Management Board and dated May 3, 2015. She needed N7,500 to treat the child.

She was informed of service provisions in the state that cares for the indigent, with the assurance that a call put through to Lagos State Ambulance Services (LASAMBUS) will bring her help and her child will be treated at the state hospital for free.

At this, she stopped crying and her countenance changed.

She asked if help will actually come. Seeing the correspondent fetch a phone and already dialing 112 (Lagos State Toll Free Emergency Response Line), she desperately pleaded against calling for help! When The Guardian visited the spot 20 minutes later, she had vanished.

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