By Gladys Kalibbala
AT 14 years, Naigaga has slept with so many men that she cannot remember the number.â€œI pray God forgives me for such a sin because it was not my choice and thatâ€™s why I want to go back home,â€ explains Naigaga, one of the lost children being kept at the Central Police Station in Kampala.
She had gone to fetch water at her home in Namayemba village, Bugiri district when some people in a vehicle abducted her about three months ago.
Her parents, Ibra and Betty Mambi stay in Namayemba village. When she woke up after being drugged, she learnt that she was in Bunga, a Kampala suburb, with Maama Collin, who fries cassava and samosas.
She was comforted that she would get money as a house girl in that home. However, she was there for only two days.
On the third day, she was told she would be given a job which fetches more money.
â€œThat evening she gave me new clothes, worked on my face with make up and took me to a lodge!â€ she narrates.
From that day, it was a routine every evening to have sex with people Maama Collin brought. The money those people paid was always taken by Maama Collin.
After a month of frustration, she managed to snatch sh2,000 from the womanâ€™s bag and fled, not knowing where to go.
The bodaboda man who took her got fed up of a girl who was crying and did not know her destination. They were now in Makindye.
He abandoned her there and did not take any money from her because she looked desperate.
Among the people who came to intervene was someone she had seen in Bugiri. She welcomed her in her home in Makindye.
She was excited at the offer of a room that night only to discover that it was a lodge. In the morning, she was told to pay sh3,000.
The lady who took her up that night introduced her to some girls of her age in order to orient her in the trade in the area, which was sex. â€œI was hurt that I was back to something I had run away from.â€
She, however, adds that the only good thing about it this time was that she was the one getting the money she worked for and had bought herself some clothes. After saving sh20,000 for a month, a friend took her to another street for a night.
While there, the Police invaded the area and they ran in disarray. She could not remember where Makindye was, let alone the name of the place.
For three days, she was in Kibuye, trying to look for her working place, in vain. By then, she was so hungry and did not have money to buy food, until someone handed her over to the Police as a lost child.
She now wants to pick her clothes she had managed to buy from the Makindye place in company of a Police officer and be assisted to reunite with her parents in Bugiri.
NAMPIINA LEFT HOME FOR MBALE, BUT ENDED UP IN KAMPALA CITY
WINNIE Nampiina, 15, boarded a taxi she thought was going to Mbale, but ended up in Kampala.
It was her first time in the city, so she found everything strange. She kept on asking the conductor whether it was Mbale.
Although she is in P7, Nampiina only speaks Lusoga. The Iganga-based Nambale Primary School pupil says the conductor thought he had got a free girl and pulled her lesu as she disembarked the taxi.
The act was to make her return to the vehicle. She says she got scared and jumped out, falling on the pavement.
A lady who hails from Busoga took her home for a night and handed her over to the Police in the morning.
She had some misunderstandings from home, where she says her father chased her and wants to go to an aunt in Mbale.
By press time, her mother had contacted the Kampala Central Police Station and was expected to pick her.
BATA LEFT KISORO AND ENDED IN JUBA
Esther Bata, 10, says she left her home in Kisoro with a neighbourhood friend, Nyaziboneye, to go to town for shopping. Itâ€™s not clear whether she lost the friend in Kisoro or Kampala.
When she realised she was alone in Kampala, she decided to board a bus she says looked like the ones she used to see at her home.
It took her to Juba in Southern Sudan, where Good Samaritans kept her for a night. She was later given money and put on a Kampla-bound bus. Someone from the bus company handed her over to the Police in Kampala.
Bata says her father, Rutaaro, has a shop in Kisoro. Bata was staying with her grandmother, Tawiha, and wants to go back to her. She was studying at Kabindi Primary school.