The Member of Parliament for Assin South Constituency in the Central Region, Rev John Ntim Fordjour, has called on the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) to pay medical bills for defilement and rape victims.
The MP said such a move will enable victims or their families report such cases to the hospital and police for prompt actions.
His proposition was also influenced by the fact that many raped victims in deprived areas have their woes worsened by the inability to foot their medical bills, he remarked on TV3 New Day hosted by Bright Nana Amfoh on Monday.
“I am proposing that the health insurance absorbs the bills of rape victims so that anyone will be motivated to report and that barrier will be removed because [the Adadietem] one, it was reported to the hospital before the media came in and if they had no money, they could not have reported,” Rev Ntim Fordjour said.
Meanwhile, the young man who is alleged to have defiled a four-year-old girl at Assin Adadietem was arrested on Sunday.
Attempts to bring the suspect, Kwabena to book were hampered as he was allegedly cleared of any wrongdoing by the ‘gods’ of Adadientem through the local chief. read more
Rev Ntim Fordjour noted that “between the year 2010 and 2014, 5752 defilement and rape cases were reported to the various police stations across the country. These were ones that were reported. Several of them were not reported”.
Chief shielding suspect
The New Patriotic Party (NPP) legislator said the chief who allegedly performed rituals to clear the suspect of any wrongdoing acted negligently.
“I find some elements of the chief irresponsible and negligent…The failure started from the chief and if we follow this way, we will not eradicate the minor rapes”.
Rev Ntim charged chiefs, pastors and the society in general to ensure that such acts are reported to the police and the appropriate authorities and not to shield the suspects”.
The MP said the police did not act swiftly on the issue when it was first reported and that was a flaw on the part of the police.
“There are some lapses in the police report because there was a clear delay of about five days on the side of the police to act. The police should do proper investigations on the case”.
Relocation of victim’s family
The MP collaborated with Otiko Djaba, Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection to provide decent accommodation in Accra for the victim and the family.
“The Gender, Children and Social Protection Ministry has given them accommodation that will protect them. We are ensuring that my little girl is taken very good care of and we are committed to ensuring justice is served” the MP revealed.
“Every intervention that I took was because I am a father and not as an MP or politician. I also have a little daughter and I will follow through and not only this…any other issue relating to rape”, the MP said.
The man of God called for concerted efforts to fight rape and defilement.
“It must be a comprehensive fight in the country against such acts. Now Assin South has come to the limelight and we can win this fight together”.
By Kweku Antwi-Otoo|TV3|3news.com|Ghana