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GaDangme Council Defends Sexagenarian Over Relations With 12-year-old

The GaDangme Council has risen to the defence of the 63-year-old fetish priest of Gborbu Wulomɔ, Nuumo Borketey Laweh XXXIII who is alleged to have married a 12-year-old last month, saying the ceremony was only a betrothal.

In a statement, the Council said it had engaged the Gborbu Wulomɔ who had confirmed that the ceremony was not marriage as propagated in the media.

“The Council has engaged the Gborbu Wulomɔ himself and some of his elders and it is important to clarify that the traditional ruler has stated that the relationship with the underage girl is a betrothal and not a marriage.”

This, the council indicated, makes a difference as it rules out legal implications associated with child marriage.

“We are inclined to side with the Gborbu Wulomɔ since the original reportage made the point that there was another ceremony that awaited the girl to purify and prepare her for procreation. We concede that whilst betrothal could involve an underage person, it does not grant a license to the person to start having a sexual relationship with such a child thereby jeopardizing her education and even endangering a difficult childbirth since her organs are not properly developed.”

It however called on the Gborbu Wulomɔ to ensure that the girl’s well-being and rights are protected, with her education prioritized throughout the engagement process.

“She should continue her education until she reaches the legal age of marriage, and even marriage should not disrupt her education if she is still willing to continue,” it indicated while charging the parents of the girl to psyche her into living her childhood life.

Nuumo Borketey Laweh Tsuru XXXIII, a fetish priest at the Gborbu Wulomo shrine in Nungua was reported to have married the girl who according to the shrine, is ordained to serve one of the 99 deities of the Ga-Adangbe group.

Her critical role, the spokesperson of the shrine said, demands that she remains a virgin and thereby the rites to ward off men.

This has not sat down well with social commentators and stakeholders as they have started campaigning for the arrest of the older man and his accomplices.

The Executive Director of Africa Education Watch, Mr Kofi Asare in a Facebook post said the act is illegal.

“The law says it is illegal to marry the 12 year old girl. The excuse that she won’t be performing conjugal duties is immaterial to the law. The cops must grab the Gborbu Wulomo and cohorts now!”

Meanwhile, the Member of Parliament for Madina Constituency and Human Rights lawyer, Francis Xavier Sosu has petitioned the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) to arrest Nuumo Borketey Laweh Tsuru XXXIII, citing a breach of Article16(2) of the 1992 Constitution.

The Police say they have initiated an investigation into the development while the girl and her mother have been offered police protection and support.

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