AFRICAN CHILD DAY: #ChildrenAreNotSlaves

As the african child day is celebrated all over africa today, I gladly join millions of people who have left their various responsibilities to mark this great day.
The reality of the hell in which millions of african children find themselves today has forced me into writing this article.

The african child has been alienated by persons who have willingly accepted the responsibility to build, feed, educate and unconditionally care-for, untill he/she comes of age to be independent. The enormity of the hell in which the African child lives in, has yielded nothing, but stinking poverty, mass maternity death, illiteracy, militancy and an acute brain damage.

Children all over africa sleep-hell, breathe-hell, eat-hell, drink-hell and live hell. Thousands are raped every month, millions have no shelter, millions die from curable diseases, millions go to bed hungry everyday and millions are dying in illiteracy.

The government in africa has woefully failed in its responsibility to protect the african child. The level at which children, mostly girls are trafficked out of africa will only prompt one to say that the government has willingly given the perpetrators of this madness a free hand to go on. Africa is known to have loose borders within itself (for trade reasons, but this have been abused immensely, and the results unpleasant – talk of terrorism), which has created the easy route for the trafficking of vulnerable children out of their homeland into slavery.

One in three children in Africa that are enrolled in school drop out of primary education. This children are in turn married out, forced to hawk on the streets, given out as house-maids, raped and exposed to the unimaginable hash reality of life. The generation of Africans that first got educated, paid no dime and most of them were forced into school. It is ironical that the same generation took over power from the colonial masters and under their watch the cost of education ran up, without looking back, like when Bolt is trying to break his own record.

The view of many Africans towards what many people call ‘western education’ (although it is not western), is the major reason why some parents will never send their children to school even when they have the money to do so. The african culture has been alienated, insulted and trampled beneath the feet of modernization; this injustice must stop and our culture should be integrated into our educational system – there is always room for modernization, ours should not die along the line, our stories must be told by us till eternity.

Children are meant to enjoy freedom, fly on the wings of childhood, take shield in their families and feel the love that comes with parenthood, but the tales coming from our homeland defies all these. Africa must step up the fight against child marriage, child trafficking, rape, high cost of education, poor infrastructure and corruption to help build and transform children into an effective workforce that creates and multiplies ( not eat) wealth.

God bless Africa.
God bless the African Child.

Abah Linson Igoche

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