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Regional News of Monday, 28 April 2014

Source: Kojo Smith

Regulations to criminalize spirit child phenomenon soon - Sirigu Regent

Chiefs from all seven traditional areas in the Upper East Region where the spirit child phenomenon is practiced have started initiating local regulations to outlaw the practice.

By the age old traditional belief, children who are born with any form of disability or have any or both of their parents die after birth are considered spirit children and are, therefore, given specially prepared concoctions for them to die.

Christian missions and a number of international charities were compelled to partner a number of local non-governmental organisations to set up special homes to absorb victims of the phenomenon.

Welcoming an Rlg Foundation delegation at his Palace, the Regent of Sirigu, Anyoka Akwara said after a public declaration by all seven chiefs condemning the practice, they have begun a process to codify local rules against the practice.

He said the final document will be forwarded to the security agencies in the three Northern Regions for implementation including arrest and prosecution of offenders.

According to him, while the practice had some relevance in times past, it is currently considered counter-development and retrogressive.

“Today, this behaviour of ours undermines development in our communities. We are more than ready to banish it once and for all," the Regent told the delegation.

The Rlg Foundation delegation was in Sirigu to commission and hand-over a number of projects sponsored by the Foundation to chiefs and people of the town.

The projects include a mechanised borehole for a local primary school and donation of assorted items including provisions and food to the Mother of Mercy Babies’ Home at Sirigu.

The Manager of the Rlg Foundation delegation, Mr. Malcolm Frazier said as the birth place of the Chief Executive of Rlg Communications Group, the parent company of the Foundation, Mr. Roland Agambire, there was the utmost need to offer it the needed priority especially when the entire township is seriously deprived.

Present at the ceremony was the Kasena-Nankana East District Manager of Afrikids, a British charity working to eradicate the spirit child phenomenon in the Upper East Region, Mr. Joseph Asakibeem.