A girl who has accused her father of years of sexual abuse and violence has been applauded for her bravery in speaking up, though authorities need to fight for her justice, advocates say.
Fighting for justice for Efua
The girl, who Pulse News is naming Efua to protect her identity, has alleged she has been sexually and physically abused since she was five until her teenage years.
Pulse News has uncovered details of the allegations and is following the case as it progresses.
As the case is currently before the court, details cannot be released but those close to it are urging all relevant authorities to take the allegations seriously.
She say her younger sisters are also in danger of the father.
The accused was initially arrested in mid-February this year and charged with incest, though police are waiting on advice from the Attorney General's office on how to proceed with the case.
A British charity has been supporting the girl and fighting to get justice for her but had found many frustrations in this plight.
A lead supporter from the charity wanted to appeal to all involved in the case and in Ghana's justice system to step up for the girl's sake and the many others in similar situations of abuse.
"We have felt resistance against justice on a number of levels. It is important that, in the future, this case, and others like it, are given the recognition and professionalism they deserve. We hope that this case results in a fair trial, an accurate and full prosecution and a conviction with truth and integrity,” he told Pulse Ghana.
Human rights lawyer Irene Aborchie-Nyah had also been following the case.
Ensuring it was properly investigated and professionally handled was crucial to ensure other children were encouraged to speak up on abuse.
She said children like Efua might have been “brainwashed” by their abusers with death threats.
“They need to be congratulated and encouraged and assisted to seek justice.”
She was also calling on those in a position of justice to take action. She wanted the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, the police prosecution and Attorney General to all “come up and fight for justice for these children”.
“If justice is done in this case it will encourage other children who are in a similar situation to come up and seek justice. It will also deter those parents who are abusing their children to know the law will catch up with them, so it will help stop this form of abuse.
“We should not handle this case like any ordinary case. It should be handled with a lot of care so that it discourages others and encourages other children to come up and seek justice.”
Pulse Ghana will be reporting on this issue in full as well as the wider issues it brings up.
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