– Since Roland lost his parents at the age of 9, he sells iron on the streets to make ends meet
– The 13-year-old takes shelter where he does his ‘iron business’
– He says he wishes to go to school and become a lawyer but lacks the means to achieve this
Education, South African anti-apartheid revolutionist and ex-President Nelson Mandela said, is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world. But Roland is very much handicapped and unarmed with such an important tool even though he wishes it were not so. The young lad sells iron on the streets of Calabar to take care of his basic needs and he is just 13 years old.
Roland said he had lived with his parents until their demise when he was only 7. Since then, he had fended for himself and braved the odds.
While teenagers of his age have guardians to cater to their needs, the young boy is without a helper and has roamed the streets for over 5 years.
He said incoherently: “I don’t have mother, I don’t have father, I used to pack iron to sell it and eat”
He told Legit.ng that he left where he stayed with his parents in Calabar to where he holes up now, an uncompleted building he lays his head after the work of the day.
When Legit.ng visited the said place he lays his head each night, it wasn’t a place good for a child of his age. Aside from that, it is an uncompleted building; there is no lighting, basic home facilities or even a bed. There is also no form of security where he sleeps. But for a nylon-like material, he literally would have been sleeping on the bare floor. He uses a mosquito net as a covering.
The promising lad desires to go to school to pursue his dreams of being a lawyer, as this is his prayer each night he goes to bed.