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General News of Thursday, 10 June 2010

Source: GNA

Minister appeals to queen mothers stop harmful practices

Takoradi, June 10, GNA - Madam Betty Busumtwi-Sam, the Deputy Western Regional Minister, has said education was the key to stop harmful traditional practices meted out to women and girls. She said though tradition was good to maintain the nation's cultural heritage, those that affect the health of people must be disregarded. Madam Busumtwi-Sam said queen mothers and chiefs must therefore lead the campaign to modify traditional practices that tarnish the image and health of women and girls.

She was addressing 40 queen mothers from Sekondi-Takoradi and Shama areas at a capacity building workshop organized by the Ministry of Women and Children's Affairs on the Domestic Violence Act at Takoradi. Madam Busumtwi-Sam said since education was the only way that could stop the practices, parents and guardians must send their children to school. She said as violence against women and girls continued to be practiced, queen mothers should not connive with victims' relatives to accept compensation to settle the cases at home.

Madam Busumtwi-Sam appealed to traditional leaders to report such cases to the police for the law to take its course.

She urged the Ministry of Women and Children's Affairs to initiate legislation to ban lesbianism and homo-sexuality in the country and appealed to queen mothers to speak up against such practices "as it is not our custom."

Madam Busumtwi-Sam appealed to women to contest the district level election and suggested to the queen mothers to encourage women to contest. 10 June 10