More gender-based violence courts advocates

A Circuit Court Judge, Mrs Abena Oppong Adjin-Doku, has expressed worry over inadequate number of gender-based violence (GBV) courts in the country.

She said it affected speedy trial of cases relating to violence and made victims lose interest in pursuing such cases.

Mrs Adjin-Doku stated that currently there was only one of such courts each in Ashanti and Greater Accra regions, while more than 100 cases were pending.

She said this at a meeting with stakeholders in the fight against violence against women and girls, organised by Women in Law and Development Africa   (WiLDAF) with support from Oxfam, in Accra yesterday.

The programme, which aimed at raising awareness and to mobilise support to reverse the trend, marked the 16 days of activism against GBV, which was on the theme “Your role as a stakeholder in ending gender based violence.”

Mrs Adjin-Doku called on the National Commission for Civic Education and women organisations, to periodically organise programmes to educate the public on the effects of violence against women on children on society.

She called for the empowerment of women and children to enable them to pursue cases without fear.

Chief Superintendent Lawrence Akorli of the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU), appealed for shelters for victims of abuse.

She said DOVVSU had about 100 active outlets across the country and urged victims to report perpetrators to its offices.

A board member of WiLDAF, Mrs Afua Adotey, said its campaign seeks to educate the public and government about GBV and human rights.

She lamented that though the Domestic Violence law was passed in 2007 to address violence, the practice continued to increase.

By Anita Nyarko & Abigail Annoh 

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