In an attempt to escape whatever problem the incompetent government of their countries have brought on the people, there came the move across North Africa across the Mediterranean and into Europe. But unfortunately, crossing the Mediterranean is not a walk in the park.
Citizens of Ghana, Nigeria and a host of other African countries are stranded in Libya and are being sold as slaves.
Imagine an able bodied man being sold for as low as $400US and as much as $700.
Gone are the days of trans Atlantic slave trade and the deadly result of that on the generality of Africa. Even after the abolition of the trade, slavery and slave trading did not end, there was the ‘legitimate trade’ which was an advanced form of slavery and of course Colonial which existed up until the late 20th century.
While we all agreed that the slavery and slave trading of the past impoverished Africa and developed Europe (Read; How Europe Underdeveloped Africa by Walter Rodney 1973). Many scholars are of the opinion that even after being granted autonomy and self governance, Africa is still serving her slave masters(the Europeans)
While the 21st century servitude is one Africa brought on itself as a result of the unwillingness of its leaders to think outside the box and overdependence on the White race.
The deadliest form of slavery is the one Africa is being engaged in.
While we raise our voice and concern of stopping the new form of slavery going on in Libya, with celebrities and people of influence lending their voices, calling on the UN, the government and NGOs, we should take time out to reflect and understand what slavery really entails.
Do you have a housemaid who works 24/7 around the clock cleaning the house, taking care of your children and at the end of the month, such a maid’s salary is paid to a Madam or a relative of the maid? You are enslaving the maid and just as we are calling on the government to do something about Libya, we are calling on you to stop enslaving that cousin, nephew, niece or distant relative of yours whom you took away from their parents under the pretense of enrolling them in school while they assist your wife who is pregnant or just gave birth, but instead, you use them in a way you can’t use your children. Send them on errands even when clearly there are risks involved.
Your maid deserve the same life your child has.
You don’t bring people out of poverty by bringing their children to the city and make them work their lives off and in return you maltreat them and put them in schools which are substandard compared to your children.
In states like Virginia, California and cities like New York, Pasadena and even Nebraska, there are laws guiding the employment of maids and nannies because these professions are recognized by the law and not just any vulnerable or poor person get to do them. And they earn the stipulated minimum wage proscribed by the government for workers.
If you must have a maid, ensure that he or she is 18years and above, old enough to decide and not being pushed around by a third party whose interest is only in the salary they will earn on your maid’s behalf. Engage your maid in discussion, interview, evaluate them before you give them a shot and if at the end of the month, pay them directly.
In certain cities, there are agencies handling the distribution of nannies and maids just like we have for models and security guards. Engage the agency and ensure that everyone’s interest is met.
The distant relative, the vulnerable Cameroonian girl you have taken as slave and continually maltreat will on day revolt, steal your jewelries, connive with armed kidnappers, turn into a menace and cause you harm, no matter how small. But all these could have been prevented if you had done the right thing from the start.
From d9ty7stories, we are calling on well meaning Nigerians to join the pack as we hope to put to an end the slave auction going on in Libya and we hope to God that every form of slavery and servitude will stop as well.
It is also time we make our voices heard on the issue of Nigerian girls being trafficked into prostitution in Europe, that is another form of slavery.
To everyone out there who have been coerced into serving one family or the other against their will, or any form of servitude, domestic or not, THERE IS LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL AND FREEDOM IS NEAR.