Abam chief backs down on threat to banish widow from town

Police in the Eastern region have succeeded in preventing the humiliation of a widow threatened with banishment after she refused to undergo some widowhood rite.

Private legal practitioner, Irene Abotsi-Nyahe who sought help for the widow told Joy News that the development came after police in the region invited the chief and the widow for a discussion.

This follows a Joy News report that a woman had been given with a 24-hour ultimatum to agree to the demands of the chief of the town, Nana Abam IV, to undergo the rites or face banishment.

Irene Aborchie-Nyahe had said earlier that the Gender Ministry could not brag about protecting rights of women in the country if it failed to attend to the plight of a widow in Abam.

Aborchie-Nyahe called on the Gender Minister to stop Nana Abam IV from carrying out his threat of banishing the lady from the town.

Speaking at a gender forum to mark International Woman’s Day, Gender Minister, Nana Oye Lithur urged the police to step in and save the situation.

“It is a constitutional provision and no traditional leader or community can insist on a woman going through these practices…so whoever is doing that should note,” she warned

Irene Aborchie-Nyahe expressed gratitude to the Minister, the Eastern Regional Police Command and to Joy News for carrying the news and saving the ‘poor widow’ from embarrassment.

She advised women lawyers and NGOs to organize public education to enlighten women not to embark on certain traditional rights against their will.

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