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15-Yr-Old Rape Victim Seeks Justice   
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A 15-year-old girl, who was allegedly defiled and impregnated at the age of 13, is crying for justice after a case that was brought against the man who perpetuated the act has been pending in court for the past three years without a verdict.

The girl who turns 16 in November this year was allegedly defiled on December 13, 2012 by a friend of her grandmother whom she was staying with at the time at Oda.

Narrating the issue to Weekend Finder, the girl (name withheld) said the accused person, George Aseidu Darkwah occasionally, gave and her siblings money on their way to school.

On the faithful day, she said the accused who was washing his car at the time called her to help him write down something. “I told him I was late for school so I would do it later when I come back but he said it was urgent so I obliged. When I entered his house he held me and put me on the floor and warned me not to shout if not he would stub me with something so I kept quiet.

“After he had sex with me he took a stick with a red band tied to it and threatened to kill or eliminate me if I tell somebody. I became very scared and even though my teachers tried to find out what was wrong with me because I became quiet and distant I couldn’t tell them. I was really scared of dying.”

She added that even though she was very close to her little brother and spoke to him about so many things she could not tell him.

She told Weekend Finder that with time people started saying she was growing fat; “my grandmother asked severally what was wrong with me but I was not talking. One day she called my dad and told my dad she suspected I was pregnant.

“My dad asked me who was responsible for the pregnancy and that if I don’t talk he will disown me and sack me from my grandmother’s house.” With no other choice left to her she decided to tell her dad what actually happened.

She narrated that when the accused was later invited to her house to ascertain the truth, she told the paper that the accused initially denied the incident but later admitted to the crime.
The case was later reported to the Number 9 Police Station at Oda in April 2013 and later referred to the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) in Akim Oda.

The Father of the victim told Weekend Finder that since the case was taken to court it had been hit with series of adjournment.
The accused through his lawyer requested for a DNA test to be conducted to establish if indeed he was the father of the unborn baby. During the period of the trial, the judge got seriously sick and could not continue with the case and that led to the case been transferred to another court.

The new court later granted the request for the DNA to be done which took nine months for them to get the results.

According to the girl’s father they suspected that the DNA test was tampered with. They had since been in and out of court.
Victim who was in JHS two at the time had to drop out of school to give birth, the baby boy is now a year and nine months.

The young mother who says she is determined to be a lawyer in future has managed to go back to school and has successfully written her Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) waiting to go to the Senior High School.

When Weekend Finder contacted the investigator in the matter, Madam Vida Eshun, she confirmed the case to the paper.

She told the paper, “Indeed I was the investigator in the matter, the case has travelled quite a distance and it is indeed true that so many issues cropped up. The accused asked for a DNA test which was granted by the court but the DNA result that came from the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital proved that the child was not that of the accused so the case was struck out.”

When asked if she was aware that the victims was contesting the DNA results and have requested for a new paternity test to be conducted, Madam Eshun said even though she was not aware of it, the victim was allowed to contest the test and have another one done until they are satisfied.

She added that the victim could seek justice at any level if she so desired.

Human Rights Lawyer Francis Xavier Sosu, who has taken up the case of the victim said, “This is one of those many cases of sexual violations and gender based sexual violence perpetrated by members of our society. I have decided to help this victim and family get justice because defilement is on an alarming increase and this can endanger the lives and future of our young children.

“It is very sad and troubling and if care is not taken law and order could breakdown in the country. There are just too many of these issues of people committing offenses and getting away with them. The victim was 13 at the time of the forced sexual encounter with the suspect which led to her pregnancy. In fact whether the pregnancy belonged to the perpetrator or not does not even take away the criminal liability of defilement,” he told the paper.

He added that Section 101 of the Criminal and Other Offenses Act, 1960 (Act 29) clearly provides that having sex with a child under 16 amounts to defilement. “If the sexual act is proved and the age is also proved the case is made out against the accused person. I just think the Ghana Police Service is seriously failing in their duty to protect the citizens who are victims of these crimes.”
Source: The Finder

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