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General News Thu, 7 Jan 1999

Mother throws 17 months old child into fire

Accra (Greater Accra), 7 Jan. '99 A woman who threw her 17 months old female child into fire resulting in severe burns, is to be sent to a psychiatric hospital for examination. Mrs Frances Owusu-Arhin, chairperson of an Accra circuit tribunal gave the order on Wednesday when the 38 year old unemployed mother, Rebecca Yarney, appeared in court on charges of exposing a child to harm and causing harm. The tribunal further ordered that, the child, Akua Mummy, should be sent to the Osu Children's Home. Rebecca pleaded guilty but the tribunal entered a plea of not guilty for her when she explained that it was ''an act of a devil''. Police Inspector Alex Yartey Tawiah of the Women and Juvenile Unit of the Police Service, said on January two, this year, at about midnight, Rebecca who stays at Nungua gave the child to a neighbour to look after while she went to do some purchases. On her return, Rebecca who appeared drunk, collected the child but the neighbour, who was suspicious of her behaviour trailed her to the house. The woman, the prosecution said, saw Rebecca throw the child into a coalpot with fire . People around rushed to the rescue of the child who had severe burns on her body and sent her to hospital where she was treated and discharged. A report was made to the Kpeshie Police who referred the case to the Women and Juvenile Unit.

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