Lagos Historical Review

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Strangers, Indigenes and Child Kidnapping in Late Colonial Lagos

P Osifodunrin


This article, focusing on child kidnapping, examines the involvement of
strangers and indigenes in the commission of the offence in late colonial
Lagos. Although it was good to think that strangers were the perpetrators of
this heinous crime against defenceless children, I argue on the basis of
written evidence in colonial newspapers and records that both strangers and
indigenes perpetrated the crime. But unlike the offender-indigenes that
operated within a protective societal structure that concealed their identity,
the strangers who often acted alone and were not fully integrated into the
Lagos society had no hiding place as they were easily identified, reported and
prosecuted by the colonial administration.
AJOL African Journals Online