It is a common sight in Lagos now so we are largely inured to it. When Governor Fashola removed beggars from the streets of Lagos early in his administration, focus was on the implications for freedom of movement and the citizenship in Nigeria. Questions were asked about the fairness of a vagrant from some hinterland coming to reap the benefits of social service funded with tax of hard working Lagosians. The emotional debate raged for months and barbs are still exchanged about the sense of entitlement held by citizens of poor Nigeria and their expectation of support from government. These children are found at major traffic lights and areas where traffic pools regularly as a result of obstructions on the road. Like the approach to CMS where the picture below was taken. The children range from a few months old to about 14. They are interspersed by older women of indeterminate ages, some of whom could be as young as 16 but given their mode of dress and careworn faces it is difficult to tell. They dart in between cars stopping to appeal to drivers and passengers they think will be sympathetic to the plea of hunger and destitution. At busy junctions like Sabo, on Akin Adesola Street, on Ozumba Mbadiwe Road, Mobolaji Bank-Anthony Way and similar spots, they mob cars in the struggle to wipe-wash windscreens. Refusing their efforts has been known to draw their ire expressed by spitting or smearing soap suds on car windows and shields. Nigerians are a kind and sentimental bunch. We do not see the threat to security posed by these seemingly innocent children. Worse still, we do not see the children as victims of a possible cabal of child traffickers who relentlessly transport their quarries to locations where having been trained to do so, they artfully persuade commuters to part with loose change. Loose change these days for Nigerians is seldom lower than N50. Many part with as much as a thousand, especially when the beggar is only knee high. Once our alms deeds are done, we promptly put them out of our minds while the minders smile to the bank or perhaps move on to help fund the next consignment of class A drugs or even contribute to Boko Haram or ISIS. The point is that these children and hapless women do not keep the money for themselves. They deliver, under threat of bodily harm, to their handlers who are never seen or associated with them. The children never go to school, so they are denied their right and opportunity to improve their lives. Most are abused sexually, become mothers long before their bodies and minds can cope or become objects to sate perverted lust. A sinister possibility is that they are probably as a repository for body parts and organs to meet the not infrequent demand of the rich and powerful. Some have been killed, victims of hit and run accidents, bodies slowly ground into the dust of Lagos and eventually breathed in with the smog. Branded by culture and religion and subconsciously dismissed as detritus of society, the plight of these young people remain unnoticed.