By Charly Agwam – Bauchi
Hisbah, the Islamic police under the Bauchi State Sharia Commission has commenced census to ascertain the number of prostitutes operating in Bauchi, the State capital.
The Permanent Commissioner, Aminu Balarabe Isiah of Hisbah, told newsmen that the exercise is in line with its effort to tackle prostitution among girls and women in the State.
Flagging off the census at Bayan Gari on Wednesday, Isah said that the head count would assist the state government in designing programmes that would rehabilitate and empower the commercial sex workers with a view to ending the menace.
He lamented that the rate at which adolescent girls indulge in prostitution is worrisome as their acts have negative social and health effects in the society.
He further said that the women and girls would provide information on the reasons they left their families, and if they are willing to get married or reunite with their families.
The noted that those who do not want to marry or go back to their states or places of origin would be trained on some skills and be given equipment and capital to start trades with hope that they will give up prostitution.
On his part, the Chairman Hotels Association in Bauchi, Chief Eze Patrick Anyawu revealed that there are 41 hotels (brothels) at the area with about 5,000 ‘residents’.
He said as leader of the hotels proprietors in the State, he is ready to support the government to implement the programme to empower the prostitutes.
Women leaders in the area, Hafsatu Aliyu and Maman Iyabo who decried the high number of abandoned children at Bayan Gari, pleaded with the State government to take care of the children or co-opt them in orphanage homes.
“Some of the girls came to this place because they lost their parents and many have no relatives that will support them financially. We will support the government in making sure that they quit the act of prostitution,” they said.