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Sold Into Modern Slavery at 12.

I was about twelve young, naive and still a fool,

When I was handed to my aunt who promised to enroll me in school.

At first I wouldn’t go but I summoned courage,

Cause to be the pilot that I dreamt of I knew I had to pass through college.


So I wave my family goodbye promising to come home the next holidays,

Not knowing I wont see them for the rest of my years.

Now my aunty instead to train me, protect me and educate me,

Sold me to those who used me, abused me and exploited me.



Just like a baton is handed from one runner to another,

I was handed from one perpetrator to another perpetrator,

Where daily I experience severe trauma, which devastated my healthy development and injure my self concept, self worthiness and biological integrity.


You see to be a slave at my stage in this age,

is only possible because corruption has blinded our eyes like a bandage,

So it has become impossible to see the thousands in bondage and the hundred thousands stucked in forced prostitution, forced labour, and forced marriage.



I cried through all phases of recruitment, indoctrination and initiation.

As I tour – my pains sour to the sky I wish I could fly and ask God why but I feared cause,

am being turned into a slave and lack what to say when I open my mouth to pray.



So eighteen for me was not adulthood but graduation into a victim of post traumatic,

stress disorder,a psychologically stressed-out individual, just another Josiah Henson

who believes he is hopeless without his master Benson.

I fear I have developed symptoms of Stockholm syndrome.





Written by Stephen Ishaya

Media and Information Unit