The Ark Foundation, Ghana, an advocacy-based, women’s human rights non-governmental organization wants killers of 90-year-old woman to be arrested and made to face the law.
The 90-year-old woman was lynched to death at Kafaba near Salaga in the Savannah Region for allegedly being a witch.
The incident happened on Thursday, July 23, 2020, in the East Gonja Municipality.
The Ark Foundation in a statement said this act is in violation of human rights and the perpetrators must face the full rigorous of the law.
Portions of their statement read: As an organization concerned with the safety and protection of women, The Ark Foundation calls on the Inspector General of Police to ensure swift action towards the apprehension of the direct perpetrators of the brutal act and the bystanders; and bring them before the law courts.
The Savannah Regional Police Commander, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP), Mr Enoch Adutwum Bediako detailed how the incident occurred.
“The information the police got was that an old woman of about 90 years had been beaten to death at Kafaba near Salaga. Police proceeded to the scene and saw about a 90-year-old woman dead in a house. Our initial information gathered indicate that this old woman was alleged to be a witch and therefore was tried by certain fetish priest and found guilty and therefore some youth beat her to death. The body has been conveyed to the Tamale Hospital and investigations have begun to bring the perpetrators to book.”
Below is the statement
PRESS STATEMENT ON THE GRUESOME MURDER OF A NINETY-YEAR-OLD WOMAN IN EAST GONJA MUNICIPALITY
The Ark Foundation, Ghana condemns the gruesome murder of the ninety-year-old woman identified as Akua Denteh at Kafaba in the East Gonja Municipality.
This barbaric incident which was reported by the media on Thursday, 23rd July 2020 consists of several infractions of the legal and human rights of the deceased:
• The wrongful accusation of practicing witchcraft
• Verbal abuse and intimidation
• Severe assault and battery
• Bystanders who by their inactions abetted the murder of the innocent woman
As an organization concerned with the safety and protection of women, The Ark Foundation calls on the Inspector General of Police to ensure swift action towards the apprehension of the direct perpetrators of the brutal act and the bystanders; and bring them before the law courts.
We call upon the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice to work hard to educate the public against such human rights violations; especially those that emanate from deep-seated negative cultural norms and practices, many of which undermine the protection of women’s human rights in the country. Violence against women no matter who perpetrated it is still a human right violation and must be treated as such.
We call on traditional authorities and community leaders to act swiftly as law-abiding citizens when such acts are being perpetrated within their communities. Traditional authorities and leaders should desist from shielding people who perpetrate such heinous and inhumane acts and report them to the police for the laws to take its cause.
The Ark Foundation considers this act as an act of mob (in)justice and murder and calls upon the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Interior, and relevant institutions to work together to ensure that justice is done and done swiftly.
Angela Dwamena-Aboagye (Ph.D.)
The Ark Foundation, Ghana