Blessing (not her real name) was rescued and has since been reunited with her family.
On Friday, October, 22, the innocent girl had written her final paper in the Basic Education Certificate Examination and was returning home from the examination center, which was located outside her community, and was forcefully whisked away to be married to a man in her community.
All efforts by the parents of the girl to rescue the adolescent girl proved futile.
The case was then reported to the Paramount Chief of the traditional area but the man still refused to release the girl to her family even after he was invited to the Chief’s palace.
After several unsuccessful attempts to retrieve the girl from the man’s home, the chief advised the family to report the case to the appropriate legal authorities.
With the work and visibility of Norsaac-trained Legal Literacy Volunteers (LLVs) on the Power to Youth Programme, the parents sought their intervention to assist the family in reporting the case to the appropriate legal institutions in the district.
The LLVs advised the girl’s family and supported them to report the incident to the Ghana Police Service.
The man was arrested along with his colleagues who accompanied him to forcefully carry the adolescent girl to his abode.
The adolescent girl was rescued and returned to her family, receiving some psychological and counselling support from the Department of Social Welfare and Norsaac.
The Department of Social Welfare is the first point of call to assist the needs of children/adolescents in this situation.
Mr Issah Abukari, Project Officer at Norsaac, indicated, “We are very interested in this case, and we will closely monitor it to ensure that the culprit is dealt with by the appropriate laws to serve as a deterrent to others in the various communities.”
The Programme Manager of the PtY Program at Norsaac, Ms Yeri Nancy, indicated, “These are moments of joy for us on the project, the PtY program seeks to put an end to harmful practices such as Child marriage in all forms, and in this case elopement.
“It is a criminal act, per the constitution of Ghana and progressive chiefs and community members like the case of kayoro will continue to set strides that will send a strong signal to future perpetrators.