Cage them!

In recent times, we have come across frequent disturbing news in the country about acts of defilement involving very grown-up men who undertake such despicable act against young female children as young as eight to 10 years.

This is a shameful act that should be condemned in no uncertain terms.

The surprising thing is that many of these disgraceful acts are sometimes carried out by teachers who are expected to know better and even help in the protection of the girl-child.

Right from the primary to second-cycle institutions, these outrageous incidents are allowed to take place with no serious actions taken against the perpetrators.

And, once the culprits are let off the hook, the crime wave in this area continues to grow day-in-day-out in various parts of the country. Sadly, it is as if the situation is being accepted as a normal development.

Indeed, the nation needs to stand up against such wicked acts and take measures to eliminate their occurrence in society once and for all. It is very unfortunate that when such acts occur, chiefs and opinion leaders shamelessly get involved to plead for clemency on behalf of these impious perpetrators.

The truth of the matter is that defilement is a serious crime, so anyone who involves himself in this ought to face the full rigours of the law. If it is proved beyond reasonable doubt that a particular person is guilty of defilement or rape, the appropriate sentence should be meted out to whoever deserves it  – and this will serve as a deterrent to would-be offenders in our society.

If we go strictly according to law and punish people accordingly, we will soon find out a drastic reduction in crimes of this nature. When this occurs, it is society as a whole that would stand to gain.

This also means that the police, on whom we rely heavily for investigation, is expected to act swiftly in matters of this kind so that the culprits can be brought to book according to the laws of the land.

Why should head teachers in our first-cycle institutions as well as headmasters in second-cycle institutions find themselves saddled in such disgraceful matters?

On page 3 of Tuesday’s Ghanaian Times newspaper, a horrible story of one Charles Cromwell, head teacher of Cape Three Points Basic School in the Western Region, was said to have allegedly defiled an 11-year-old pupil of the school, a few days back.

According to the police, Cromwell lured the little girl to his bedroom and had sexual intercourse with her after the poor girl had been asked to take some textbooks to the home of this head teacher. The headteacher allegedly gave five cedis to the victim and threatened to kill her if she revealed any information about the act to anyone.

Such intimidation of victims of sexual assault is widespread because as a country we do not mete out severe punishment to perpetrators of such acts. If we all make it a point to deal ruthlessly with wicked perpetrators of this crime, sexual attacks in the form of defilement or rape would immediately become a thing of the past.

The girl-child needs to be protected, not destroyed. She needs to be encouraged to move higher with her male counterparts but not intimidated and embarrassed into submission to accept what is unjust in the form of sexual harassment.

Justice for all means that each and everyone must be given free space for social development so that society would be better for all.

We need to strike out any form of sexual harassment from our society and the time to do so is now!

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