Early Marriage Escape ends in rape in the city. What a pathetic story. To escape or not to escape, that is the question.
The culture of giving out the girl child off to marry a man who qualifies to be her father or grandfather has been identified as old fashioned, backward and abuse of the child.
It is inhumane and detrimental to the health, education and dreams of the girl child.
This is what compelled, Ubaida,12, Kayayo (head porter) on the buzz and busy streets of Accra to escape from her hometown, Walewale, (a small town in the Northern Region) to Accra. Our most recent post “2018 WASSCE 2nd overall best is now a Kayayo with no help to be a Nurse” is worth your attention as well
The Early Marriage Escape…What Happened?
12-year-old Ubaida had resisted an attempt by her parents who were forcing her to marry “husband to be” a man in his 60s, old enough to be her father/grandfather.
Though she was young in age, she had the unweaving desire to become a nurse in the not far future to help save lives.
When she was faced with the truth that, her destiny was about to be altered should she get married at age 12, she decided to “save her life” by escaping from a cultural practice which she did not subscribe to.
She borrowed a few Cedis and escaped from the grips of her parents but Alas! She only jumped from frying pan to fire. She only ended up being raped in Accra.
“There were times I’ve been raped at night by some of the miscreants who also live on the streets of Accra,” said 12-year-old Ubaida.
“Rape is one of the most terrible crimes on earth and it happens every few minutes. The problem with groups who deal with rape is that they try to educate women about how to defend themselves. What really needs to be done is teaching men not to rape. Go to the source and start there.”
How is life like for Ubaida in Accra?
Accra was to be a haven for her so that her future dream of becoming a nurse would be realised. Apart from being raped, she faced the realities of life’s toughness, challenges and unfriendly smiles.
“It is not in the still calm of life, or the repose of a pacific station, those great characters are formed. The habits of a vigorous mind are formed in contending with difficulties.” – Abigail Adams
“Bad times have a scientific value. These are occasions a good learner would not miss.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
And so, the 12-year-old freedom seeker Ubaida ended up on the streets of Accra with her peers because of the culture of forcing girls into early marriage against their wish.
Her pathetic revelation is that she has been raped on many occasions by some miscreants on the dangerous streets of Accra. Ubaida has been in Accra for not less than (3) three years
According to Abaida and from all indications, life is hard on the street for a young girl her age. She ended up in Accra not a fault of hers but to avoid a bad decision of early marriage, she has faced unwarranted abuse by miscreants.
As a Kayayo (Head Porter) she makes about GHS5.00 by assisting shoppers with their loads. She spends the night sleeping in front of shops that have closed for business each night.
What are the plans of the resilient Abaida?
Upon all the ups and downs in Accra, Abaida is burnt on going back to school. This is the resilience that inspires writers like Joseph Kobla Wemakor to bring such touching stories to you. Wisdom Hammond and the Ghanaeducationnews support your efforts and salute you as we become the voice for the voiceless and the unheard.
This is not an English reading comprehension passage but the reality of the abuses our children and girls, in particular, are going through in many parts of the country and the world at large. Who will speak for them?
Her inner strength, self-belief and emotional stability are second to none as she said: “I would like to continue my education. My dream is to be given a home and an education. I know I can make it if I just get the chance”.
How to support Abaida and the other girls
Ubaida, all these girls need care, attention and serious help to go back to school.
Ubaida’s plight has really touched the hearts of the Purim African Youth Development Platform(PAYDP), an NGO that supports Kayayei to understand their legal rights through legal literacy training, livelihood empowerment training and gives sexual and gender-based violence information and services to these vulnerable girls.
Share this post, spread the news, joins us as we bring hope and a brighter future to children like Abaida.
Other touching stories on Ghanaeducationnews.com worth reading are
Take a look at Joseph Kobla Wemakor’s profile