The Widows and Orphan Movement, (WOM), a non-profit organization focused on helping alleviate the plight of widows and orphans in Northern Ghana has called for the decentralization of state institutions such as CHRAJ and DOVVSU to the various Districts in the Upper East Region as well as the setting up of Domestic violence shelters to provide services for victims and families. In response to domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence and even stalking some countries have domestic violence shelters, law enforcement, rape crisis centers, children’s Services to reduce future violence.
To sustain the impact of the ENOUGH project aimed at ending Sexual and Gender-based Violence, a separate initial scoring was conducted to identify the gaps between community members who access services from these institutions and another for the various state institution including duty bearers in the region. While there exists a challenge with access to many of the state institutions in the Upper East Region due to the high poverty level of many, t, however, came to light that these institutions scored high when it comes to delivery of services. At a joint scoring and dialogue session for community and duty bearers on the implementation of the Domestic Violence ACT and Legislative Instruments, the Executive Director of WOM, Fati Abigail Abdullai further described as worrying the delay in the implementation of the Domestic Violence fund with the legislative instrument backing it and the lack of Shelters for Abused women.
While acknowledging the commitment of the two major political parties to feature the implementation of the Domestic Violence Funds, Madam Abdulai stressed the need for the Gender, Children and Social Protection Ministry to include the fund in their annual budget submitted to the Ministry of finance. The National spotlight on Domestic and sexual violence has brought more survivors out of the shadows with increasing requests for prevention programs.
However, due to budget shortfalls, many of these service providers are forced to turn away victims who are desperate and have nowhere to go. Ghana joined the rest of the world to commemorate the International Day of Rural Women, with the spotlight on the urgent need for building rural women’s resilience in the wake of COVID-19, for “building back better” by strengthening rural women’s sustainable livelihoods and wellbeing. Since 1992, there has been a steady improvement in the human rights record in Ghana with news legislative Acts including the Domestic Violence Act 2007, the Disability Act 2006, the whistle Blowers Act 2006, Human trafficking Act 2005, and the Juveniles Justice Act 2003, the Children’s Act 1998, the criminal code that repealed criminal libel and sedition law and just recently Parliament passed the Criminal Offences (Amendment) Bill 2020 been passed. Ghana has also ratified and signed onto most United Nations and African Union Human rights treaties, the picture of enjoyment of human rights is still far from perfect. The establishment of the Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice emanated from the Office of the Ombudsman provided by both the 1969 and 1992 constitutions with the responsibility to investigate human rights abuses and administrative injustices. The commission has a vision to create a free just and equitable societies where fundamental human rights and freedoms are respected and power is accountable and governance is transparent. In an interview on GBC URA Radio, the Upper Regional Director of CHRAJ, Lawyer Jallaludeen Abdulai acknowledged that the commission is present in only five (5) municipals and districts owing to constraints in with budgetary allocation and lack of offices accommodation in the other districts.
He further indicated that the Commissioner of CHRAJ has written to all sixteen Regional Ministers to allocate office accommodation in the various districts under their jurisdiction for staff to be posted there to enable victims of human abuse to access the services rendered by the commission. While encouraging all legal citizens to be interested in the human rights of others, the Director of CHRAJ reminded perpetrators of human rights abuses to be mindful of the law and even the pricks of the conscience.
Apexnewsgh.com/Ghana/Contributor: Prosper Adankai
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