“I Disguised As A Man To Work in The Mines, Until I was Accused of Rape”
“My name is Pili Hussein. I was born into a large family. My father had six wives and 38 children. From childhood he treated me like a boy, giving me livestock to take care of and I didn’t like it…Marriage was not kind to me either as my husband was abusive to me, so at age 31 I ran away. Somehow, I found myself in the town of Mererani where the precious stone Tanzanite is mined
I heard there was fortune to be made mining these stones, that they were a thousand times more profitable than diamonds. I didn’t go to school so I didn’t have many options and women were not allowed into the mines…so I disguised myself as a man to get work there. I entered bravely like a man. I took trousers, cut them into shorts and appeared like a man. I spoke like a man and could cuss like one too. I changed my name to Uncle Hussein
I could go 600m under, into the mine. I not only acted like a man, I was a leader of men. I acted like a Gorilla, I could go places even men were scared of going. I would dress like a Masai warrior, carry a big knife and talk tough. Nobody ever suspected I was a woman.
“I was able to work there for 10 years. I built houses for my father, mother and twin sister, then I began to employ miners to work for me.” Pili Hussein Read: What if I Didn’t Wait?- ASA
And her cover was so convincing that it took an extraordinary set of circumstances for her true identity to finally be revealed. A local woman had reported that she’d been raped by some of the miners and Pili was arrested as a suspect.
“It was when I was wrongly accused of rape and taken into custody that I had to reveal my true gender. Even then, people found it hard to believe it, I had successfully fooled them for so long. Shortly after, I met my current husband.The question in his mind was always, ‘Is she really a woman? “It took five years for him to come closer to me.
…I have no regrets. Today, I own my own mining company and I employ over 70 workers. I have sponsored over 30 of my nieces and nephew to school. “I’m proud of what I did – it has made me rich, but it was hard for me,” – Pili Hussein
Source: BBC Worldwide