It was reported tha about 2,000 commercial sex workers in Awka, the Anambra State capital, have concluded arrangements to go on strike on Wednesday, following the demolition of their “settlement” beside the cattle market at Amansea Awka North Local Government area of the state.
The State Urban Development Board stormed the place at about 3.12pm on Monday with over 50 armed police personnel, alleging that the brothels were being used a hideouts by kidnappers and other criminals.
The commercial sex workers quickly mobilised and set the remaining structures at the cattle market ablaze shortly after the demolition, accusing the ASUDEP officials of trying to “give a dog a bad name in order to hang it”.
The leader of the sex workers, who gave her name as Rachael, during an interview, described the action of the government officials as wicked and inhuman for destroying their “business centre without notice”.
She added, “We are decent people. We do our business and go our way. We don’t habour criminals. After all, most of the people that visit us are government officials. They want me to expose them?
“They destroyed our centre and left behind other huts, kiosks and canteens that belong to the Hausa cattle traders. Is that justice? Don’t those ones habour kidnappers and criminals?”
She threatened that the sex workers, numbering over 2,000, would embark on a four-day strike, starting from Wednesday, to register their grievances against the government’s action.
“We want to tell them that they are the people patronising us,” Rachael said.
The General Manager, ASUDB, Mr. Enemmuo Chinedu, who led the operation, said the exercise was part of Governor Willie Obiano’s resolve to rid the state of criminals.
Chinedu added that the structures demolished were illegal buildings, where prostitutes, kidnappers and armed robbers resided.
He said such demolition would be extended to Nnewi, Onitsha and other urban centres in the state, where brothels and illegal structures had sprung up “until all prostitutes in the state relocate”.
The ASUDEB boss explained that three weeks notice was given to the occupants to vacate the area.
He stated, “A lot of prostitutes live around Amansea cattle market, spoiling our children and constituting a nuisance in the area and you know that anywhere there is a brothel, criminals and kidnappers hover around there.
“In my capacity as the ASUDEB GM, I will ensure that this doesn’t exist anymore in the state and our activities