Lawyers and family members of a 12-year-old girl have accused the Ghana Police Service of covering up a case in which a Police Lance Corporal, Emmanuel Kwamena Bartels, is alleged to have defiled the girl.
Addressing a press conference in Accra yesterday, the team of human rights and public interest lawyers at Dzorwulu based- F-X Law and Associates, together with the family members of the victim and residents of Abeka-Lapaz, demanded the immediate arrest and prosecution of Lance Corporal Bartels, who is the official bodyguard of the Minister for Communications, Dr. Edward Omane-Boamah, for defiling and impregnating the 12-year-old girl.
Amidst tears and wailing, the lawyers-led by Mr. Francis-Xavier Kojo Sosu, decried the continuous silence of the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) over the sexual abuse of the little girl and demanded justice in the matter.
Mr. Sosu attacked DOVVSU and Ghana Police Service for what he described as a “sinister plot by the two security institutions to cover up the dastardly act, whilst calling on the Attorney General, Director of Public Prosecution, Ministry of Gender and Social Protection and Parliamentary Select Committee on Gender to ensure that the Ghana Police Service do the right thing by bringing Lance Corporal Bartels to book.
Flanked by top officials from the Human Rights Advocacy Centre, Department of Social Welfare and Ministry of Gender and Social Protection including the father of the victim, Mr. Mawunyagah Kwashie, Mr. Sosu provided a documentary proof to back their claims that Lance Corporal Bartels defiled the victim three times which situation resulted in the pregnancy.
He said the victim and her family would not be at peace until the police officer was arrested.
He noted that Lance Corporal Bartels, with strong family ties to the popular Bartels family, impregnated the minor some seven months ago.
But several attempts by the victim’s family to get the Ghana Police Service to punish the errant officer had been disregarded, he added.
Mr. Sosu further alleged that there was a clandestine move by some powerful people in society and the police service to cover up the crime, and thus called on the police to investigate the matter and allow justice to prevail.
The father of the victim, Mr. Mawunyegah, who supported the lawyer’s call, said Lance Corporal Bartels rented an apartment from him at Abeka Lapaz.
He said the police man took advantage of his absence and defiled his daughter on three separate occasions.
According to him, the little girl is now seven month pregnant, stressing that what is baffling is police reluctance to arrest and prosecute the police man because of his connections with the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC).
“How do we guarantee the safety and chastity of our children if these people are not made to face the full rigours of the law,” Mr. Mawunyegah quizzed.
“…because she is poor, and also coming from a broken home she has to deal with her seven month pregnancy alone,” he lamented.
“What then is the work of Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVSU) of the Ghana Police Service, Ministry of Gender and Social Protection……Where are my media friends? Police have refused to prosecute because the Officer is connected politically. God Have Mercy,” he added.