The cultural stereotype that has seen many women wrongfully accused of witchcraft with some having their children seized from them and others been lynched should be considered as a canker and addressed as early as possible so that others won’t have same fate as Madam Akua Denteh.
The youth wing of the NDC in the USA is encouraging lawmakers across the country to propose laws and bring changes to how situations like this can be handled.
It’s been almost a week after Madam Denteh’s death and the ensuing nationwide resentment against such barbaric acts, however, it’s also as important as a political discourse if our legislators will discuss issues of such nature when the need arises.
There has been a lot of such incidents in the past, including the neglect of our elderly in so called witch camps especially in the northern part of Ghana. Of course, in politics, practising what’s been preached hasn’t gone down well in the ordinary people, so this is the time to rewrite the wrongs.
People have been complaining about these so called soothsayers and prophets for so many years, and it always finds a way to just go away.
This is one of those opportunities in which we could really gain grounds as both parties; NDC and NPP by finding the commonality and really addressing something that is beyond politics.
The unjustified killing of Madam Denteh and similar cases like hers has dent the image of religion and has also sown a wrong misconception/assumptions.
However, there’s come the need for a nonpartisan law to help address such a challenge so it doesn’t become part and parcel of us in some days to come.
Culprits of such impenuties should be brought before the law and victims has to be compensated.
The law among other things should make lynching and stigmatisation be a specific, non-bailable offence, and also be punishable by a maximum of a sentence.
The Law must also compel security officers to preemptively identify attacks and to intervene without delay. Failure to do so would result in discharge and punishment for dereliction of duty.
When a lynching do happen, a charge must be laid within few months or a review committee in parliament should be left to investigate, and the respective region or community must compensate the victim’s family. This I believe will prevent such barbarism from happening again.
So I’m pleading to the government of the day and other stake holders to take a second look at the definition of the right of women in our dear country.
Youth Organiser NDC USA