First..it’s a Friday…I don’t write blogs on a Friday…But this has got me so mad..
About 18 months ago I was in a STRAT meeting for a 14-year-old girl who was the victim of child sexual exploitation. It was a very intense meeting and professionals seemed to be battling against each other to reach the appropriate outcome for the girl. I was busy making notes and writing down what I wanted my input to be when one of the professionals said, “We must also realise that she puts herself in risk taking situations by being involved in child prostitution”. I was still looking at my pad and I just stopped…. dead…. pen mid flow. There was not even a break in the chatter. Another professional said “Yes, even so blah blah blah”. I clicked my head up…..no one had flinched so I said (I had not said much at this point just listening) I said “Hold on….stop…Are you all telling me that you agree that she is a child prostitute”. And I kid you not, every professional in that room just stared at me. Then the lead chair said, “What would you call it?”. He said this with a serious face…like I was going to pull out some crazy word for what was happing to this girl with a load of theory behind it. I said
“I’m going to say that she is being rapped and sexually abused…because that is what is happening”. And then a senior person within the sector…sitting next to me said “Yes, but she is selling herself”
So, I walked out. I just got up, not a word, got my stuff…kissed my teeth….and left.
I went and found a manager that I knew, and I made it clear that the term “child prostitution” was being used in a meeting and he needed to go and sort it out.
Why? Because “Child prostitution” is not a n actual thing. A child cannot prostitute themselves or sell sex. And if you disagree with that…holla at me…lets have it out.
Which brings me on to the article in question that you can read Here.
The strap line: “The Horrors of Child Prostitution in Ghana”
So, from that line there you can kind of tell how this goes down. But please read the report before reading what I have to say. Once again you can read it Here
Under the strap line is a picture with the words “Melphia is 13 years old. For the last three years, she has been working as a child prostitute in a slum in Kumasi, the second-largest city in Ghana.”
“For the past 3 years she has been “Working as a child prostitute”. What…since she was 10. If this report is true and an actual human spoke to a 13 year old child who told them that since 10 they have been rapped and sexual abused by god knows how many people and that person who looked in that child’s face still wrote “Melphia is 13 years old. For the last three years, she has been working as a child prostitute in a slum in Kumasi, the second-largest city in Ghana.” Then I think that person should never be allowed near children again. What do you think?
Wait…let me see who wrote this… ok… “By Sophia Bogner and Paul Hertzberg”. I looked these people up on twitter and such but can’t find them. So really if anyone knows how I can contact these people…let me know.
Anyway…Lets go through Sophia and Pauls article and establish why Spiegel should never be allowed to cover the abuse of children in their reports ever again
“Melphia has sex with up to five men per night: workers, businessmen, police officers” No…..Raped…Melphia is raped by up to 5 men per night…
“Without the foreigners, child prostitution wouldn’t be nearly as lucrative,” says Martin Opoku Sekyere, who works as a volunteer to combat child prostitution in Kumasi. Ok…So Martin Opoku Sekyere Is out here working on the front line to stop children being exploited. So surely, he does not believe that child prostitution is a real thing.
Maybe it’s a misunderstanding. I mean the age of consent for sex in Gahan is 16 so there can’t really be a mistake. So, I found him on Facebook and contacted him. Told him that this report must be wrong. That he should tell Spiegel to take it down. …Right…back to the article
“Dr. George Oppong, head of the Ghana section for the NGO Defence for Children International’s (DCI), for which Sekyere also works, says that nobody really knows how many children are currently prostituting themselves, though he estimates somewhere between 100,000 and 200,000. The youngest are just 9 years old.” Wow…. Did Dr. Oppong…head of the NGO defence for children say that children are prostituting themselves and “The youngest are 9 years old”. Let’s hope he didn’t. But just in case he did I have written him an email:
Good afternoon Dr Oppong,
I am writing to you with regards to the following article https://www.spiegel.de/international/globalsocieties/child-prostitution-in-ghana-hell-on-earth-a-1262055-amp.html
The article states that you have said
” Dr. George Oppong, head of the Ghana section for the NGO Defence for Children International’s (DCI), for which Sekyere also works, says that nobody really knows how many children are currently prostituting themselves, though he estimates somewhere between 100,000 and 200,000. The youngest are just 9 years old.”
I am sure you must not have said that because a man such as yourself who represents children will know that a child cannot prostitute themselves and that the age of consent in Ghana is 16. I am informing you of this mistake that Spiegel has made by implying you have used the word “Child prostitution” and urge you to contact then and have this article taken down as I am sure as a human you would not want your name associated with something such as this.
I have included your contact details in a social media post so that others can let you know that they also think this post should be taken down.
This was his response a few hours later
Re: Child prostitution
Rah….you just straight up lied Spigel…. He never said that ..
Anyway…lets keep going@ Spiegel
“A few hours later, he slept with her. It was her first time. Ali told her she could make money with sex, but Melphia didn’t want to. Just sleeping with him was so painful that she could barely walk.”
Ok…lets all stop a fucking second. A 13-year-old child is telling you about the first time she was raped at aged 10…that it was so painful she could not walk…and the reporter on this thought they would write “A few hours later he slept with him”. Regarding the “young man” who raped her.
Whoever wrote this…. you honestly make me sick…like sick to my stomach. I read it and heaved. Like…I honestly want to one bang you in the mouth. Why did you write that?
” Then Ali (the “young man” You raped her) told her about the Chinese. He said they would pay 25 euros ($28) to have sex with a small girl. He became her pimp”.
He became her pimp did he. She was 10 years of age.
Fuck off. Just fuck right off.
Hang your head in shame Spiegel.
“All of her earnings vanish instantly. Much of it goes to her pimp”
To her rapist Spiegel…to her rapist
The article goes on to talk about Melphia’s day to day living. Having to pay for showers, having to deal with violence, being in “competition” with adult women who are prostitutes.
Its awful and heart breaking and the thought that any child loves like this is sickening to say the least.
Sadly, its reports like this one that make it even worse. By making out that Melphia is a prostitute instead of what she is… the victim of sexual abuse, rape, and neglect.
I ask everyone to contact Spiegel and tell them to take this down
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Just do somthing…..dont just read the article and go…well that snot very nice…and move on.
Come on people