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Police report shows increase in domestic violence in Ghana

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Gender violenceA Report by the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Ghana Police Service for August  on gender-based domestic violence against women,  reveals an increasing trend in cases of domestic violence.

The Report said there was a total of 17, 708 cases on non maintenance from 2011 to 2013.

The Report showed that 5,797 cases on non-maintenance were recorded in 2011, 6107 in 2012 and 5797 in 2013.

Total defilement cases stood at 4,488 from 2010 to 2013,  which included 981 cases in 2010, 1,168 in 2011,  1,111 in 2012 and 1228 in 2013.

Assault had a high record of 5,382 in 2011, which reduced to 746 in 2012 and went up to 2795 in 2013.

Mrs Charity Binka, Executive Director of Women, Media and Change, made these disclosures in a presentation at a day’s workshop in Accra for media practitioners on the theme; “Let’s Challenge Militarism and End Gender-Based Violence.”

Other reported cases included, rape, incest, abortion and forced marriage.

Mrs Binka appealed to the media to recognize violence as a human right issue, and attach importance to it, by exposing the perpetrators, adding that  there was the need for Ghanaians to change their mind set, treat women with the dignity  they deserve.

She also called for investigative reports and follow ups, features and documentaries, which she said, would go a long way to create the needed awareness on domestic violence against women.

Mrs Lydia Osei Agyemang, DOVVSU Administrator, said the unit played a very important role in abuse prevention, adding that there was increase in the domestic violence cases due to the awareness that has been created  over the years.

She, however said, challenges confronting the Unit include delays in reporting cases, difficulty in getting evidence, difficulty in getting funds for medical treatment, and reports and limitation of healthcare.

She complained of some unhealthy media reportage of domestic violence cases,  such as, showing pictures of child victims or perpetrators, identification of victim’s relations, showing of pornography materials to children.

Mrs Agyemang said the Unit had adopted mechanisms to control domestic violence by awareness creation and public education, apprehension and prosecution of offenders,  and the enforcement of the relevant legislation to the letter.

Source: GNA

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