Open Menu


  • Tags: wahaya
narrative image.png


In 2016, the estimates of modern slavery in Sub-Saharan Africa accounted for approximately 13.6 percent of the world's total enslaved population. As evident from surveys conducted in Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa and Ethiopia by Walk Free Foundation, slavery in Sub-Saharan Africa takes the form of forced labour and forced marriage. In Nigeria, survey results suggest that forced labour is predominantly within the domestic sector, although it was impossible to survey in three regions due to high conflict. In Nigeria and Niger, the ‘Wahaya’ practice  continues to exist in which women and children are sold into sexual and domestic slavery as unofficial ‘fifth wives’. They are known as such because they are in addition to the four wives legally permitted in Niger and Nigeria. Tikirit Amoudar, 45 years old, describes how she was sold at aged 10 and remained as a ‘wahaya’ for 15 years.