The Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Otiko Afisa Djaba, has strongly condemned the alleged defilement of a four-year-old girl at Dadientem in the Central region.
In a statement, the minister affirmed the commitment of her ministry in ensuring justice for the victim.
“I have directed officers of the Department of Social Welfare and the Children’s Department of my Ministry to visit the victim and her family to ascertain the facts about her welfare for necessary action to be taken.
“I am also preparing to personally pay a visit to the little girl and her family to affirm our readiness to support the victim to receive justice and restore her dignity.”
The statement added that “the defilement of any child is horrifying, traumatic and unacceptable…I strongly condemn what has happened in no uncertain terms since it violates the fundamental human rights and dignity of this innocent girl.”
Below is the full statement
THE MINISTER FOR GENDER, CHILDREN AND SOCIAL PROTECTION, HON. OTIKO AFISAH DJABA CONDEMNS THE DEFILEMENT OF 4-YEAR OLD GIRL AT ASSIN DADIENTEM
The defilement of any child is horrifying, traumatic and unacceptable. My attention has been drawn through media reports to the defilement case involving a 4-year old girl at Assin Dadientem in the Central Region. As Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection, I strongly condemn what has happened in no uncertain terms since it violates the fundamental human rights and dignity of this innocent girl.
Whilst waiting for the Police Report, I have directed officers of the Department of Social Welfare and the Children’s Department of my Ministry to visit the victim and her family to ascertain the facts about her welfare for necessary action to be taken. I am also preparing to personally pay a visit to the little girl and her family to affirm our readiness to support the victim to receive justice and restore her dignity.
We are also collaborating with the Ghana Police Service to ensure the perpetrator and all those connected to this criminal act are brought to book.
To further demonstrate our commitment to the protection of children, our officers of the Domestic Violence Unit and Children’s Department, specifically; Madam Victoria Natsu and Madam Helena Obeng- Asamoah respectively, have condemned the act (Joy News TV- 24th October, 2017 and Executive Breakfast Show on Class Fm on 26th October, 2017).
The defilement of any child is extremely worrying, in 2015 alone DOVVSU recorded 1,180 cases of female defilement and 16 males. The Ministry wants to assure Ghanaians that we are very sensitive to issues concerning the welfare of the vulnerable in our society and will continue to promote their rights, their wellbeing and development. We are liaising with other agencies for justice to be carried out for this little girl to serve as a deterrent to such abusers.
The public is advised to report cases of defilement, rape and all forms of sexual abuses to the nearest police station or any law enforcement agency for the necessary processes to be initiated so that the evidence required by the police for investigation is not destroyed.
Parents are advised not to leave their children alone and also be very mindful of who they leave their children with when they are absent, since the perpetrators of defilement are people close to the family and/or trusted relations.
I want to emphasise that the protection of our children is a collective responsibility and I thus entreat all members of our communities to be more vigilant.
We acknowledge the role of our traditional and opinion leaders; however, we would like to advise them not to arbitrate on such criminal matters. Defilement is a criminal offence and all such acts should first be reported to the Police.
The Ministry wishes to remind the public that the survivor is a minor and we should all make an effort to protect her identity and dignity. I would like to thank the media and the general public and assure all Ghanaians that my Ministry is following up on this case seriously to its logical conclusion.
Hon Otiko Afisa Djaba
Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection