DAUGHTER OF THE LAND

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The imperialist had his fair share of the cake when they pounced on Africa and rid her off her dignity and joy. Interestingly, the ship that brought the missionaries also brought the gun and gun powder. Till legends like Stephen Biko, Nelson Mandela, Kwame Nkrumah among others fought for the liberty of their various countries, Africa would still be attached to the apron string of the imperialist. Slowly, slavery ended in the 18th Century with the French colonies ending slavery in 1849. With these snippets of information, one would have concurred that slavery was closer to its extinction. Sadly though, recent events seem to be taking us back into time especially as we posses no time machine. It is estimated that there are over a hundred brothels according to a DW TV PROGRAM, COMFORT ZONE. These brothels hosts young girls between 14 to 26 years.  It was also revealed on the same program that the cocoa and mining sector supports activities that are in line with modern day slavery in Ghana. However, the worst victims of these anomalies and inhumane gesture are the young girls who have no one to speak for them. Hence I want to use this platform to talk for them.

The above mentioned estimation really proves to what extent the country is losing out on potential human resources. In a recent publication on GHANA WEB, An NGO, ACTION AID GHANA, says “places like Amasaman and Abokobi, which were the focus of the two-month research showed between 12 and 15 girls out of 200 were sexually abused in their schools”.
This alarming statistics surely causes a scare. However, one bell that rings in our minds is where are the institutions, and what are they doing about this sinister situation? Well, the answer is obvious. Till date, there has been no official response by any quarters. Ghana is indeeed weeping for her mothers and future wives.

The largest and lucrative sector in the farming fraternity is the cocoa plantation. This sector forms one of Ghana’s largest foreign exchange and export product apart from Gold. This sector obviously is a rich source of foreign exchange income for the government and Ghana as a whole. Judging from its gigantic nature, it could employ many young, vibrant and enthusiastic young men who want to make an earning for themselves and their family. Sadly though, in spite of all efforts made by human right agencies to stop child labour, these rich cocoa “lunatics” use these young boys and girls in their farm in the name of cheap labor. They exploit them to the bone and use some of these maidens as sex machines who service their incorrigible sexual appetite whenever they are sexually hungry. In a documentary by a BBC investigative journalist, BLACK CHOCOLATE ,  it was revealed that not only do these children work in farms, they are also used to smuggle cocoa. However, refusal to oblige meant dire consequences. It is sad to say that some family members allow their children to go through such ordeal. Well, if I had the chance, I would concur that it is stack madness.

Another sector, which is the tramp card of Ghana, when it comes to foreign exchange is mining.  The minning sector is the Apple of the eye of any government in power. As a result, they find it hard to really regulate their activities. Sometimes, because of the luxury associated with minning, these young men and some foreign expatriates unfortunately metamophorsise these innocent girls into prostitutes. They take these hungry looking innocent ones to night clubs, get them intoxicated and finally enjoy a taste of their innocence thus rendering them secondary and tertiary virgins. In addition to this appalling situation, they infect them with sexually transmitted diseases. It is quite sad to note that some of these boys in the mining towns prefer their small scale mining activity popularly known as galamsey. These innocent ones sometimes die in the pit simply because they are unskilled and happen to be around their boyfriends at that field. The thrust of these situations is to sensitize these girls about what lies ahead.

To cast a die on the PR work I just did,  the government institutions must be proactive, parents and guardians must strive to protect their children’s interest. The authorities and human right organizations should empower people to swoop in on these evil doers.

KOJO OFORI.

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