I am the first person in my family and among my friends to go to university. My parents are not schooled. They are peasants. They can’t speak Portuguese, they speak makuhwa. My father, though, was a cheke, a mwalima, learned in the Koran and respected in the village. We lived in Metarica, in Niassa province, in Mozambique s farthest north.
We are 11 siblings and I am the seventh, born in 1983. The eldest went to high school and became a border policeman. My other brothers work on the land. My sisters got married early. Two siblings died of disease.