*Warning: Contains sensitive content

Child sacrifice is common in some parts of Uganda. Witchdoctors, also known as traditional healers, kill children and may even dump their body parts where others can find them. Many have fallen victim and Amuza was almost one of them.

Growing up, one of Amuza’s uncles was a traditional healer. By the age of five, Amuza had been exposed to witchcraft.

“At night, Amuza would see snakes, and he would cry and not sleep,” said Becky, Amuza’s sister.

These things tortured him day and night. It became more dangerous when they attempted to claim his life. The spirits did not want an animal sacrifice, but a human sacrifice—Amuza.

When they took Amuza to the shrine later that day, he was prepared.

 “Our uncle took him to the shrine and put a knife to him, but he escaped. He swiftly passed through their legs and ran,” said Becky.

Amuza ran as fast as his little feet could take him and reported to his mother.

She wanted to report the incident to police but because the traditional healer involved was a family member, she encountered resistance. She separated from her husband and went to live in Kampala. It was around that time that Amuza was registered at Full Gospel Church Nsambya which Tearfund’s partner, Compassion International, operates through.

At the project, Amuza received a chance at holistic child development.

Everything went well until 2017 when the staff noticed that Amuza had missed attending the project two consecutive times.

Concerned with Amuza’s absence, one of the staff members, Moses, travelled to Amuza’s village to check on him.

“On reaching Kamuli, I found Amuza at his mother’s food stall. He was lying down on the mat. He struggled to sit up and talk to me. He’d sit for less than five minutes and lie down again. He looked very weak and dehydrated. The mother said he was not eating.”

When Moses asked Amuza what treatment he was on, he was shocked to hear the child say it was not a medical problem but a spiritual issue, and he did not believe that medicine would help.

“I proposed he be taken to a medical facility to establish the cause of the sickness, but they told me they had visited two traditional doctors in the village who told them that there were some spiritual forces from Lake Victoria possessing Amuza. From that day on, Amuza fell sick,” Moses said.

Moses eventually convinced him and his mother he needed to be taken to the main hospital in Kampala.

At the hospital, Amuza was diagnosed with tuberculosis and a lung infection. He was admitted for two months, had surgery on his right lung and was on machine support to bring healing to his lungs.

A-Dark-Path-Altered-Blog-2.jpgAmuza and Becky are grateful for everything the church and Compassion has given them.

Becky said she was so grateful for everything Compassion and the church had done. “Moses dropped everything to go see Amuza. They got a car to transport him and took him to hospital. They watched over him and paid all bills. Even now, they give us food; beans, rice, sugar, posho [maize flour], eggs and soap to help Amuza. Thank you. Thank you so much,” unable to control her tears she said, “Amuza would be dead now if it wasn’t for you.”

While in the hospital, Amuza also gave his life to Christ.

Amuza and Becky feel indebted to Compassion and the church.

“I never used to see my value as a person but the church knew my value and invested in me because they believed I was important”, said Amuza. 

“If it wasn’t for Compassion, he would be initiated into the evil world of spiritual things, but now there is support,” Becky said.

Amuza finally discovered his worth, he felt known by people that actually cared greatly about him.

 


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