Patrick was abducted in Gulu in 1995. When the rebels came, he got hold of his 13-year-old brother, Joseph, and tried to escape. But other rebels on the lookout grabbed them. They were tied up and ordered to march. His brother tried to run away but he was captured. A rebel commander called Okuti was ordered to carry out his execution. “Okuti called me. He gave me an axe and ordered me to kill my brother”, said Patrick. “I couldn’t move. I just stared at my little brother lying in front of me, his hands tied behind his back. He was begging God for mercy.” The rebels urged him to hurry up.

“If I refused, they would kill both of us”, Patrick continued. “They pointed the bayonets at the end of their guns at me and wanted to pierce me. Tears rolled down my face when I killed my little brother. I hit him three times on the back of his head with an axe.” At that moment, Patrick just wanted to die. “I stood still, hoping that the rebels would kill me. But then, as if somebody else took control of my body, I walked aside when the rebels told me to do so.”

Patrick was taken into the sponsorship programme in 2002. He struggled to get through secondary school. He failed S6 in Gulu College and had to repeat the year in Koch Goma. But eventually he succeeded. He passed with two principal passes for A’levels in 2005 and qualified for the university sponsorship. Patrick is now studying Bachelor’s in Education at Gulu University.

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