Lake Volta, Ghana — The sunset over Lake Volta obscures the sinister depth below. The rattling ship is full of young boys, trapped like caught fish and forced to dive deep to release the intertwined nets.
Driven by poverty, thousands of children are fishing there. Some work in the family business, but many are sold to modern slavery.
The United Nations estimates that one in ten children (about 160 million children) are being forced to work. Many do so in horrific situations.
Noah, whose full name was not disclosed for safety reasons, was one of the children sold to slavery. When his mother died, his father borrowed a $ 500 loan to pay for her funeral. In exchange, Noah, eight, was supposed to spend 15 years as a slave to pay off his debt.
“It breaks my heart,” Noah told CBS News. “I couldn’t go to school.”
He fled after three years of fishing on Lake Volta.
Wallace, who hides his true identity because of his mask, has saved more than 150 children like Noah. Love justice, An international charity. CBS News went with him when he did a sting operation.
Wallace said the job was dangerous for children. “It’s a very bad situation for them,” he said. “How deep an adult can be is not the depth a child can go to. Therefore, in that regard, a child can lose his life.”
A trafficker who turned into an informant told CBS News that he could buy children for about $ 80 and that he had bought thousands of children in the last 25 years. The worst thing he has ever done as a slave owner is “to force a child who doesn’t know how to swim to dive to the bottom of the lake. They can get off and never go up. I did. ”
Noah said he was beaten if the slave owner did not do what he requested. He now dreams of becoming a doctor, but the first wound that needs healing is in him.
“God punishes him,” he said to his former slave owner about what to say.
Children at risk of slavery are fishing deep in Ghana
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