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General News of Wednesday, 30 July 2003

Source: GNA

Man has five children with his sister

Tarkwa, July 30, GNA - A Tarkwa Circuit Court has sentenced a 40-year-old palm wine taper, Agbavo Dzigbodi to five years' imprisonment in hard labour for having five children with his sister.

Also charged was the sister, Esi Dzigbodi, 30.

While Esi pleaded guilty Agbavo pleaded not guilty.

In his explanation Agbavo said the father gave the sister to him for marriage but the father, Ben Kwame Dewotor, 68, denied the claim. Agbavo was also charged with assault, threat of death and possessing firearm without authority. The court sentenced him to three years' imprisonment on each of the counts and they would run concurrently. Esi, who is nursing a two-year-old baby girl, was cautioned and discharged to enable her to look after the children.

Prosecuting, Chief Inspector Jonathan Adotey said Madam Abena Dewotor and the husband lived with Agbavo and Esi at Aggreso village, near Samreboi.

He said in 1990 Esi married one Kofi Abu and went to stay with him at Manso Amemfi but due to maltreatment including beatings, the marriage was dissolved and Esi came back to live with the parents at Aggreso village.

Agbavo pleaded with the parents to allow Esi to stay with him and help him in his palm wine taping business and the parents agreed. He started having sex with the sister and this resulted in a pregnancy.

Mr Adotey said the parents advised against the relationship because it was a taboo but Agbavo and Esi continued to live as man and wife. "Up to date they have brought forth five children out of which one is dead and the first born is 10 years old."

The father, who has 12 children with the same woman, said he went to Dzodze, their hometown, to inform the family to perform customary rites to separate the two but Agbavo refused to go home.

Inspector Adotey said on July 23 the father decided to send Esi to Dzodze in order to put an end to the relationship.

He said in the evening when Agbavo came home and he did not see the sister/wife. His children told him that their grandfather had taken her to Dzodze.

Agbavo became angry and vented his anger on his mother. He beat her up, stripped her naked and threatened to kill her with a single barrelled gun for hatching a plan with his father to take his wife away. The naked mother ran into the bush, walked about one kilometre to the nearest village where he was given some clothing after which she reported the incident to the Police.

The mother was admitted at Samreboi Hospital for three days. Asked by the court why the parents have stayed for all these years without separating them, the father said anytime he talked about the relationship the son threatened to shoot him.

"Two bullets are reserved for you," he quoted the son as having told him.