Kiran Chug and Musings on motherhood
Beautiful little Hamzah Khan starved to death when he was four years old. His body, lying in his cot, was found two years later.
England is once again drying its eyes and hanging its head. Mothers are tonight holding their children tighter. Our hearts are broken.
Hamzah Khan died in a house where he lived with other children. It was a house in a street in a town in a community which didn’t know he was there. It was a life forgotten.
The headlines are enough to knock the breath from your lungs. The court reports about this little boy’s short life are too much to bear. At the end of his trial now, we read once again of agencies who failed Hamzah. We see the finger pointing, we hear the blaming. We watch the collective hand wringing.
Again, we are told agencies must work better together. Inter-agency communication, funding, workloads – all will be scrutinised again. Investigations will be done. Reports will be produced to tell us what more could have been done.
But once again, it is too late. A little boy is dead.
He is a boy who brought joy to a family. A boy who had a first smile, a first laugh, a first tooth. A boy who learnt how to walk, at first unsteadily and then confidently. A boy who was born to a mother who carried him for nine months, but then failed him so horribly. Was he a boy who ever knew love?
To wonder if a child was loved is to consider an evil beyond words.
Too many people didn’t see Hamzah’s tragedy. Too many people looked away. Too many people were too busy.
It is not just the fault of the agencies. It is the fault of Hamzah Khan’s mother. It is the fault of all of us who look the other way, who don’t question, who don’t notice, who don’t speak out, who don’t push for something better. We let a mother fail her child. This is our street, our town, our community. We all failed that little boy who died in his cot. What world is this, when we can do this?
Hamzah Khan, you are loved too late.
* If you are worried about a child, or if you are a young person who needs to talk, call the NSPCC. Its vision is to end cruelty to children in the UK.