-Leona Konah Urey, A Liberian Seeks Justice In Getting Her Children In Norway
Oslo, the capital of Norway is one of the most progressive cities in the world and also has a proud record of protecting children.
However, the country appears to have a dark secret that is tearing parents apart as they on a daily basis seen to be going against the state in fighting for their rights to raise their biological children, something they say is a nightmare for them.
In 2017, according to a BBC program: “Our World,” parents stormed the streets of Oslo and other areas campaigning and accusing the state of brutally and aggressively taking their children into care for no good reasons.
Currently, hundreds and thousands of parents in Norway are feeling the pinch of this nightmare, but are afraid to speak out for fear of exit from the country mainly Africans, but this is not the case of a courageous Liberian mother, Leona Konah Urey who for the past six years is yet to set her eyes on her four children.
Narrating in tears and pain via mobile phone, Leona said she sometimes feels empty and wants to commit suicide only because of the absence of her children especially as an African mother.
She explained that in 2013 and 2016 respectively, she attempted pursuing her children’s case but got arrested and placed behind bars for eight months but due to the pressure and advocacy from her husband including her lawyers, she was set free from the false accusations.
She said they also demanded her DNA but she refused on grounds that her charge or crime was not disclosed to her something she noted and claimed that they had a different intent and or sinister motive.
Due to her persistent advocacy for her children she claimed a false crime was placed on her by local law enforcers though the crime was not documented, neither disclosed to her.
Leona indicated that she was restrained from seeing her children as they alleged that she beat on them and also ill-treated them of which her children were taken away from her up till press time.
As desperate as they were to take her children from her, Madam Urey pointed out that some Norwegians prepared fake papers claiming that her children were mal -nourished though a record from the Gronland Helse Station, a health center where the children normally take treatment from noted that they were all healthy and strong.
Her story, she noted began when her son Andreas went to Kempen School and was insulted as African Monkey, something she said provoked her son as he Andreas jumped into fistfight with his school mates.
In the wake of investigating the matter further, they found out that she is a Liberian and she was branded as sick and mad because her country (Liberia) fought war something she noted they took advantage of such issue and is violating her rights.
According to her, the situation is alarming as parents in Norway are living empty without their kids but are afraid to speak on the matter.
Currently she added that her four children are living in the country but in separate locations, “a normal thing they do so that parents can’t easily have a trace of their children”, she added.
“I cannot see my children but when I pay people to go find them, the story I receive is so heart breaking”, Leona intoned.
She alleged that some of her kids are now being abused according to latest information she received but no one to help her in current dilemma.
Leona told our reporter via mobile phone that she complained the case to the Liberian Embassy in Brussels but no tangible step or decision has been taken.
“My latest move is to complain the state to the European Human Rights Court in Amsterdam to ensure that my rights and that of my children are protected,” she added.
The Liberian woman, who is a hair dresser in Norway, has spent several years in Norway and noted that life is getting unbearable for her especially when she thinks about her four children in tears, she noted that she needs justice even if they will send her back to her mother land, Liberia let her have her four kids.
She named her four children who are currently in different areas in the country as: Andreas who lives in Kongsvinger, Anne in Grimstad, Maria in Jaren- Gran and Clement who lives in Versby are all between the ages of five and above while the oldest this year will be seventeen years.
She said she was told that her children were informed that they have no black parents again, this she noted increased her pain as she is now traumatized as a result of the situation.
“Stealing and abuse of children in Norway is of common,” she uttered.
Narrating further Leona added that at times the stolen children are taken to rich people to be sold and abuse, “I am not afraid to say it because it is too much for me to bear any longer” Mrs. Urey, broke down in tears, reflecting that she does not know the fate of her children who could be in that same abuse or trafficking category.
According to records, about fifty- six European Countries are Against stealing children in Norway.
However, according to the Norwegian Children Protection Services Banavana,”they do all they can just to keep families together, no self-intent”, but parents who can no longer set their eyes on their children have different experiences as they are just parents for the name sake but can’t understand, touch or get the feelings of their children.
The biggest question is, the children when taken, whether they are stolen, abused or saved.
Meanwhile, family members of heart-breaking parent Leona are planning a big protest in Liberia next month to draw the attention of national government on the issue. Contributed by Julius Konton.