The International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) has called on the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) and the General Legal Council, to institute a committee to investigate an allegation of rape against the GBA president, Mr Anthony Forson Jnr. and Mr Selassie Fumey by a female lawyer, Kuukuwa Andam.Ms Andam, who said she has filed a criminal complaint against Mr Forson in Washington D.C., U.S.A., noted that the incident happened in 2012. The incident with Mr Fumey also happened in January 2011.
According to Ms Andam, she decided to come public now not because she wants money, but because she wants to ensure that other female lawyers do not suffer what she went through.
Mr Forson, through his lawyers, has denied the allegation though.
Reacting to this development, FIDA, in a statement, appealed to all female lawyers and particularly all women in Ghana, who, by one way or the other have suffered such fate and continually do same to report such acts to the rightful authorities or to the offices of FIDA Ghana and their issues will be addressed appropriately.
Below is the full statement:
Press statement by FIDA-GHANA
The attention of FIDA Ghana has been drawn to the serious allegations levelled against the Ghana Bar Association President, Tony Forson and Mr Selassie Fumey by Kuukuwa Andam, a lawyer domiciled in the United States of America.
Ms Kuukuwa Andam’s allegation is that both lawyers took advantage of her and raped her while she was doing her pupillage at the legal aid offices in Accra and also at a hotel in Washington DC.
Assuming but not admitting that such act occurred, FIDA Ghana, an association of female lawyers, an advocate against gender-based violence, takes great exception to such acts and totally condemns all forms of sexual harassment and exploitation of women in general and particularly against female lawyers in Ghana by their male colleagues.
Violence against women is understood as a violation of human right in the form of discrimination against women and shall mean all acts of gender-based violence that result in or are likely to result in physical, sexual, psychological or economic harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, cohesion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty whether occurring in public, in private life and such perpetrators are mostly known to these women.
FIDA Ghana will like to appeal to all female lawyers and particularly all women in Ghana, who, by one way or the other have suffered such fate and continually do same, to report such acts to the rightful authorities or to the offices of FIDA Ghana and their issues will be addressed appropriately.
We also wish to reiterate the fact that inasmuch as people may be linked to one of these parties mentioned in the aforementioned allegations, we should be cautious about our utterances and avoid victimising the victim or stigmatising the aforementioned lawyers until investigations are conducted.
We will also like to appeal to the Ghana Bar Association and the General Legal Council to institute a committee to investigate such serious allegations against our colleagues at the bar.