by ng sijia from singapore
NKOSI JOHNSON is a 12 year old boy dying of aids. He became the symbol of the battle against HIV/AIDS in South Africa and he is my hero. He was HIV infected ever since the date he was born on 4th February 1989. He developed full-blown AIDS 2 years later. Although doctors had given him 9 months to live, he grew up and he became a beacon of hope to millions of people living with HIV/AIDS not only in South Africa, but in some other parts of the world too. Before he got sick, he wants to stop others from getting infected and looking after those mothers and children who were already infected with AIDS/HIV. Because he was separated from his infected mother who was unable to look after him at a very young age. With his foster mother, Gail Johnson, they started a home for mothers and children who are infected by HIV/AIDS.
Why is he so different from the other children? Nkosi Johnson lived his whole life with this virus. When he became the age to attend school, he wanted to attend a public school. Parents, teacher and pupils protested and prompted the attention of the world regarding the issue of AIDS. Nkosi Johnson took up the courage to stand up for what he thought was right. He has told people and even taught them that people who are infected with AIDS/HIVs are still valuable, generous and loving human beings, and there are no reason to avoid, ignore or even afraid of them. On the 13th International AID'S Conference he appealed to the South Africans to accept people with AIDS/HIVS and treat them with dignity and love "We are all humans being, we are normal.” he told the gathering.Nkosi Johnson knew his time on this Earth was limited but he chose to spend his days being the best he could be.
On December 2000, Nkosi Johnson health turned from bad to worse. He took time to visit people that came to see him. Even when he was the weakest. He inspired those around him. A true being of Love and Light. 6th January 2001 after a week in the hospital, he was discharged after the doctors reached a decision that medically there was nothing to be done for him. Diagnosed with permanent brain damage, the doctors think that he could only live for 6 weeks. Yet Nkosi Johnson continued to live and celebrated his 12th Birthday. Which many people thought that this day will not come. Unable to eat, talk, or even walk, he just lay on his dead bed waiting for that day to come.
Finally on 2001 June the 1st, Nkosi Johnson died. He became the longest living child infected with HIV/AIDS in South Africa. A little boy like Nkosi Johnson has done so much difference so what can you and I do? Many people take me for an example always thinks that we can be infected with HIV/AIDS by meeting or talking to them. But NKOSI JOHNSON has made me change the idea that we can still be friends with people infected with HIV/AIDS they are still human being, like us they have hands and legs.
Although Nkosi Johnson is aware that one-day his time to an end. He is proud of the fact that he will not have fought in vain. This courageous boy had left a legacy behind, a legacy that will continue his struggle and forever keep his name alive.