Main Article Content
Almsgiving/charity is one of the pillars of Islam and highly recommended as a duty, however begging as a profession is totally prohibited. However, some segments of the Muslim community have exploited the Islamic window of benevolence by turning themselves into perpetual beggars. This paper examined the socio-cultural as well as religio-social effects of begging among Muslims and how the two have impacted the image of Islam and Muslims in a contemporary plural society such as Nigeria. The paper focused on the carefree attitude of both the government and the people towards the beautification and environmental sanitation system of the city of Ibadan. It interrogated the environmental degradation and the menace that beggars constantly constitute. It used structured interviews to elicit data from selected beggars from three locations in Ibadan. The paper sought to know: why poverty is synonymous with Muslims; what mechanisms are in place by Islam to deal with poverty within the Muslim community and how these mechanisms have impacted the lives of Muslims; and to what extent Muslims can engage in begging?