By Obeten Godfrey
David Essien Otu, a former street kid in the city of Calabar, Cross River State, has insisted that homeless children who roam the streets are not witches, and should not be treated or branded as such.
Essien stated this while speaking as a guest on “The Dialogue With Agba Jalingo” Sunday on Hit 95.9 Fm Calabar.
He disclosed that he was forced to leave home to the streets due to the inhumane treatment usually meted on him by his stepmother, adding that his curiosity to unravel how electronic devices were been made was mistaken for witchcraft by his father and stepmom; a situation which forced them to brand him a witch.
“My father’s wife said am a witch, because anytime my father buys an electronic device like radio to the house, I always want to open it to know what is inside, and how it was made. Curiosity led me into all these,” the former street kid said.
Essien who has now completed his secondary education expressed gratitude to God for restoring his life through the Basic Rights Council Initiative (BRCI) and SYDRI and advised the public not to see street children as witches, but instead view their situation as an unfortunate event of life.
“Most of the children you see in the streets today are not witches like people think, they are children who are not opportuned to have good parenting like other kids.
“These children are so unfortunate that they cannot access the basic needs and privileges life affords, that is why some of them are found in the streets.” He said.
David who spent over four years of his life in the streets of Calabar was rescued by Basic Rights Council Initiative (BRCI), in 2011.
The young lad said he fancies electronics, and will love to study electronics and electrical engineering in the university.
On his parting note, he advised other children on the streets not to give up, as God will one day turn their fortunes around.
“We are not witches, we can make it,” the SYRDI Ambassador said.
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