I am doing this photo documentary about Mr. Salifu Hassan, to share some light on his life journey as a person who depend on borders to meet up with a better living condition. From Ghana on his way to Europe. He is blocked in a shanty-town in Casablanca Morocco. Just to take care of his three kids with a young uneducated Moroccan woman. Nahima Farkhan, who is in her middle 30s. I was born out of a wedlock. Being so lucky she was adopted by a woman in the traditional way. When the woman who raised her up died. She was living alone in her house where she started to rent rooms for undocumented migrants to make a living. Soon the biological daughters of the woman who where successfully married came and sold the house and left Nahima homeless. The same sub-Saharan migrants who Nahima rented rooms for before came to her rescue. Soon Nahima considered, the migrants as her new family. She had a sub-Saharan migrant boyfriend who paid human smugglers to make the perilous journey through the sea to Spain. When they got there, Nahima was soon deported back by Spanish authorities. And again she went back to mingle with the sub-Saharan migrants in Morocco, as she considered them her only Family.
Hassan, who only had primary school education at Yendi, in northern part of Ghana. He dated Nahima in 2003 while living in Rabat. The couple moved to Casablanca where, they had their first boy child, Sahla. In 2007 they had another boy child named Ali. And in 2013 they had another child named Youness. The problem is that both of them are not well educated. Hassan had a primary education, Nahima had non. They don’t know much about family planning. Hassan can no more continue his journey to Europe due to the kids have now have. He said, although Nahima is interested in nothing in life, he can’t abandon her with their Kids. He wanted to take Nahima with the Kids to Ghana, to see his over 80 years old mom, but Nahima will not like to move an inch from Morocco. Nahima have of no official document about her birth, she. She don’t have any Id card on her to facilitate any documentation of their kids. She begs for alms on the streets of Casablanca, while he sales tissue papers. According to Hassan, Nahima is not at all interested in any thing not even in the education of her children. She some times goes on the street to beg for alms with the children. He is so much worried about future for their kids. The two older boy Sahla and Ali attend a public school where they only learn arabic, because it’s free. Sahla is much is much interested in education compare to Ali who loves to follow his mom where ever she goes.
I am interested to narrate their story through photo documentary to a wider public in other to find solutions to their situation. The one room the family shares is a horrible place to be. Their lives are reduce to nothing, no even the minimum to have a basic living conditions. Hassan end’s up by saying, to me that education is the key to life.
LocationCasablanca, Grand Casablanca, Morocco
My target is the show policy makers how the borders they had created had effected nationals and foreigners. I want everyone to re-imagine how majority of the population are finding life so challenging due to tougher decisions they had played a role in. My target is to reach international human right organizations to find a solution and a new home for this stateless family. These kids deserve education, they deserve to have a smile on their faces today and in the near future. They too deserve to be seen as humans, Ubuntu...
How the audience/participants were reached or discovered
How it was done
Main lessons learned
Undocumented Migrant & His Stateless Family
I can’t abandon my children like thier mother was abandon by her biological perants in Rabat Morocco. I came to Morocco since year 2000 to make the perilious journey to Europe. But ever since i had a child with this young Moroccan woman i could no longer leave her alone to go my way. Hassan Salifu, is from Yendi, in northern Ghana. His father was a famer in his village. In 1989 he bigan tradding Yam and other food stuffs to financially support his father’s income. A life style which soon sent him to other regions of Ghana to find a better living conditiona and be able to keep supporting his Parents. First to the Volta region of Ghana. After two years there he went to Kumasi in the Ashanti region, where he stayed for 9 yrs.
His father was diagnose with Diabeitise and all Hassan’s income in Kumasi was spent to send his father to the hopital at Tamale northern, Ghana. Due to the situation, Hassan Salifu, travel in 1999 out of Ghana with the aim to reach Europe in search of a better life and be able to offer his father the best health-care and also support his family.
He was able to reach Algeria where he earn enough income by working as a domestic for a rich family. Due to influences of other migrant friends, as he narrates to me, he left his job in Algeria to pursue his journey to Europe. Hassan in year 2000 paid his way to human smugglers to cross the border from Maghnia, Algeria to Oujda Morocco. And then from Oujda to Guercif where with other migrants under the supervision of smugglers board on a car to Agadir with the intention to reach Laayoun, on the coast road of the Western-Sahara, the then Migration route to Europe, through the Canary Islands.
While at Agadir, my money was not enough to continue the journey lead my human smugglers to Laayoun to board a boat to the Canary Island’s. I made up my mind and travelled back to Rabat, the capital of Morocco to find a job which will help me to gather enough money to continue the journey to Europe. It was in Rabat that i started to be intermediate between smugglers and new candidates of undocumented migration to Europe. I was doing it on the basis of commission, said Hassan, as he struggled to find any labor work to do, but there was non for a sub-Saharan migrant. Putting new undocumented migrants in contacts with Moroccan human smugglers was lucrative, said Hassan. He was able to pay his monthly house rental bills and even some times he was able to send money back home to his Parents, some of which are used to pay his father’s medical bills.
But soon his new activity got him into trouble. He was arrested in Agadir for fake identity Card and for his involvement in human smuggling. He spent 18 months in jail, before he benefited from the King Mohammed VI pardon, which is often granted to well behaved inmates during official celebrations of the Kingdom. He was in jail in Agadir, when he heard that his father had died of his long time illness.