Regional News of Monday, 25 June 2012

Source: GNA

Monkey harasses Ivorian refugees in Ghana

Ivorian refugees at the Fetentaa Refugee Camp in the Berekum Municipality of Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana, are said to be living in fear following the invasion of a strange monkey in the area.

The refugees, numbering about 1,249, told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that the creature is about two feet tall and attacked victims normally at night.

Mr. Kouadio Ethien Hyacinthe, Vice President of the refugees confirmed the attacks and said for the past two months the animal had attacked and left six of them including a pregnant woman with severe wounds.

He said what was so strange about the animal was that it attacked its prey at the left leg side and would leave a deep wound.

Mr. Hyacinthe said although all the victims had received medical attention at the Berekum Holy Family Hospital, their wounds continued to deteriorate.

An elder at Fetentaa confirmed to the GNA on condition of anonymity that the presence of the creature in the area showed that the local deity was not happy with the refugees living there.

The elder said the community witnessed a similar situation some years ago when it was discovered that some people defied the land by having sexual intercourse on a farm.

“We consulted the local chief priest and the community had to pacify the local deity with a number of sheep, schnapps and eggs before the creature stopped the harassing us,” he added.

On Ghana’s upcoming general elections, Mr. Hyacinthe assured that under no circumstance would opinion leaders at the Camp allow refugees to participate in the process.

“It is war that brought us here and we are all praying that what happened in our country will not occur in Ghana”, he said.

He said leaders among the refugees continued to advise their people on the need for them to live peacefully by abiding and respecting the laws of Ghana.

Mr. Hyacinthe, one time Minister in the war-torn nation, could not control his tears when he narrated the torture and inhumane treatment meted to some of his compatriots during the Ivorian crisis which left thousands dead.

He advised Ghanaians to jealously cherish and protect the prevailing peace in the country.

Mr. Hyacinthe debunked an allegation in a section of the Ghanaian media that some of the refugees were enticed with monies and gifts and participated in the just ended voters biometric registration exercise.

He commended the Ghana Government, the United Nation High Commission on Refugees as well as the World Food Organisation and the Catholic National Secretariat for the provision of food and shelter.

He admitted that food aid such as rice, maize and beans provided to the refugees on monthly basis could not sustain them and appealed to other benevolent and Non-governmental organisations to lend their support.

Mr. Hyacinthe expressed worry that all the tents they used as shelters at the camp now leaked creating discomfort whenever it rains.**