Opinion

A child struggling with life

By Ngor Khot Garang

Last week, a Facebook friend posted an emotional picture that was widely circulated on the social platform. The picture was so touching that you cannot scroll without shedding tears except for those who are not humans enough. Before going deeper, we all know what it takes to be a child without parents especially at these difficult times where your close relatives would only wish to see you dead for the reasons that they don’t want more burdens. On this note, children whose parents have died are seen as heavy load and by all means nobody would wish to have them in the midst of their good children.

 As a result, a child who has no parents alive and those who are in poverty stricken families will always try running here and there only to end up in a grave. But who among these children is not poor and who can claim that he or she has not lost his or her parents? The long civil war in the country has created many widows and made thousands orphans leaving them to struggle to make ends meet. And when you look at the future of these little children, you will see nothing but uncertainty and nothing else. There is no future and it will not make any sense no matter how hard they try, it keeps getting worse. They don’t know anything better apart from suffering and hopelessness.

This is just a definition of the picture I came across on that day. In the picture, a young boy carries sweets, combs and threads in a small holder with a plea for customers for his items while at the same time steals a glance at other healthy and neatly dressed school boys walking towards the direction of school.

 There is no doubt, that boy might have cried inside his heart. He had wanted to go to school and for all his life this has been one of his greatest dreams in his life but the dream keeps getting farer and this brought him to his knees. He might have prayed earnestly for God to open his way forward but why God keeps sending him more sweets to sell instead of someone to send him to school becomes yet another tougher question. He still wants to see the inside of a class but life on the other hand is calling him and this could be a situation where one chooses life over future. The boy like any other person is conscious of the important of education and the harvest that one reaps when it is completely  done but what will he do when he is the only one struggling on his own to survive. Which one is better now, education or life? If he go for education, who will pay his school fees and who will put food on the table? It is better he go for life as he waits for his time on this earth to elapse.  

Maybe he doesn’t have any of his parents alive and life doesn’t know that he is just a child and it is true many of these children do not know why they are suffering. Why they don’t have parents, why they are not going to school and why nobody comes to their aid when they are desperately in need. In some situations, they will live on a false belief that things will be okay in near future and that is why they had to run here and there to see another day but as time passes by, it just doesn’t work. It is a very sad life and I know you would be tired of your life if you were one of these boys.

The story of this young boy speaks for most of the young South Sudanese who became victims of a manmade catastrophe.  The current situation in the country pictures a 13 year old boy an adult before the age of 18. They are forced by many circumstances to quit school to provide food for their siblings or for themselves and the possibility of going to school becomes very slim and the struggle to survive becomes hard.

 The government if it wants the future of this country to be very bright must endeavor very hard and single out among these children those who want to go to school and send them to better schools and on top of that takes responsibility for the rest of the children because this would be the only way to rescue this country from shipwrecking otherwise the country will have no future leaders and the country’s future would still look bleak because the children who are in school now are not important, they are children of people who are still alive and many of them are still depending on their parents or guardians but these little children understands life and how to stand firm in the midst of disheartening situations and these are the kind of leaders that the country needs because when they take over the leadership of the country, they will understand the plight of the poor South Sudanese.     

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