Parents of girls with disabilities have been advised to seek a legal remedy for their children when they suffer any form of sexual abuse.
Mr Cornelius Derry, the Bosomtwe District Director of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) who gave the advice, said the rights of such children, like any other Ghanaian, were guaranteed in the 1992 Constitution and must be protected at all times.
He entreated parents to speak up and seek redress for their abused children and desist from covering up cases involving their wards for fear of stigmatization.
He was addressing some adolescent girls with various forms of disability during a legal literacy training at Asiwa in the Bosome Freho District as part of a reproductive health project for adolescent girls being implemented in the district.
The project is being implemented by the Alliance for Reproductive Health Right (ARHR) through its local partner, Rights and Responsibilities Initiatives Ghana (RRIG).
Funded by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Canadian Government, the project seeks to build the capacity of out-of-school-adolescent girls on their sexual and reproductive health rights by exposing them to accurate information to enable them to make informed decisions.
Mr. Derry reminded the girls that their fundamental human rights as citizens of Ghana must not be trampled upon by any person because of their conditions and urged them to report to the appropriate state institutions as soon as their rights were violated.
He said it was their right to resist any attempt to force them into early marriage against their will by their parents.
“As citizens, you have equal rights like any Ghanaian so you must always voice out against any societal norm that is discriminatory against persons with disability”, he implored them.
Madam Aba Oppong, Director of RRIG, encouraged the girls to give out information to their parents, whenever they were abused to pave way for the right action to be taken.
She told them to immediately inform their parents when men begin to make sexual advances at them to avert the possibility of being defiled.
She said the Children’s Act guarantees the rights of every child in Ghana, including those with disabilities and urged them to expose anyone who tries to take advantage of them.
Mr Nii Ankonu Annorbah-Sarpei, the Programmes Director of ARHR said the goal of the project was to improve access to information on reproductive health by adolescent girls and also link them to local health facilities for profession advice on their reproductive health.
He was hopeful that the participants would be empowered to raise the red flag whenever they were in danger to trigger the arrest of their attackers.
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