I grew up on the streets, I had no parents. I had no hope. Everyone neglected me. I was left alone to survive on the streets.
I had no friend. Mosquitoes were my paddies and I had to negotiate with them to spare me their deadly diseases, Malaria. Whiles my peers where reading books titled “students companion” poverty was my companion. I slept on the streets in Kiosks and uncompleted buildings. I fought with poverty on several occasions, yet it would find any means to settle our differences. Life insulted me, and I couldn’t retaliate. Life raped me. One faithful Monday morning, I took a bold step and walked into a classroom in Ashiaman. Seated at the back with my tattered shirts, the first statement of the Citizen Education teacher was “All men are created equal” I was pissed off and walked out of the class of course I wasn’t supposed to be in the class at the first place.
In my mind were many questions crying for answers. “Why should a teacher make such a statement?” “Didn’t the man who said all men are created equal have slaves in his house?” As I walked on the street asking myself these questions, tears became my spectacles. I was known by many people on the streets, they called me names “ohiaba” “3k)mba” and “3funuba”. Some people preached Jesus Christ to me and after I have told them my plight they tab my shoulders and tell me “oh boy it shall be well with you kk” Begging money was my daily work. Some people insulted me for begging them money and others will go extra mile to knock me because they thought I was disturbing them. I didn’t have any choice than to look at them and smile. Tears became the telescope through which I could see the brighter part of my future. I remember at a political rally in Ashiaman, as I stood at the front among the huge crowd, I could see the politicians on stage with their big belly’s protruding from their shirts. I placed my hand on my stomach and I could feel my ribs pitching my palms, yet anytime I begged money to buy water and waakye, I paid tax.
My brothers and sisters, I know how irritating some streets children or beggars can be but the best thing we can do to them is not to beat or knock them. Most of us have always been cold to them because we see them as nuisance. Trust me, being a street child is never a choice but circumstance makes it so. A little smile with words of encouragement is enough to make a street child happy for a day. We can’t neglect them for something they didn’t cause. Street children…”We are not children of a lesser god”