By Sodiq Lawal
Despite the efforts of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi to stem the tide of criminality in Ife Land, social miscreants, popularly known as area boys, in the ancient city are fast spreading their tentacles across city.
The hangouts of the so-called area boys, who are either forced into that way of life or are born into those particular social strata, where they steal from pedestrians or forcefully take money from people going about their daily businesses.
With little or no education, findings revealed that majority of them are products of broken homes with criminal activities ranging from theft, arson, intimidation to extortion.
Ife City News search indicated that the so called area boys are growing in number and dexterity in major places like Iremo Roads ,Egbingbin while their convergence point every night is located at Akodi Iremo to solidarise with other gangs.
One of the area boys, Adenekan Akeem, now a repentant confessed to Ife City News how he had dropped out of school at 11 after his father could no longer pay his fees.
Swapping the classroom for the streets, Akeem quickly became addicted to drugs.
Alhaji Isiaka Olatunbosun, the Chairman Ile-Ife National Union Of Road and Transport Workers(NURTW) during interaction with our reporter said the area boys in Iremo road are constituting treats to the flow of commercial activities lamenting that the boys are forcefully collecting money from their members going to that route.
He said: “No matter what paper you present to them, they will not let you go till they collect money from you, we are calling on government to help us flush the area boys out of the parks and bus stops in Ile Ife”
“If you stay in Iremo very early in the morning or late at night, you may be robbed by these area boys. We have called on government to take them out of the streets and the parks. They wreak havoc on drivers, we get harassed and, at times, they vandalise our vehicles when we refuse to be extorted of sums ranging from N50 to N100″.
However, Ife City News also gathered that the police have been working tirelessly to curb the execs of the miscreants.