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30.05.2006 Regional News

Chief urges Trokosi priests to stop blocking reform

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Kuve, (VR), May 30, GNA-Togbe Aklasu, Anagbo of Avegagorme, a fishing community in the South-Tongu District has asked authorities and priests in-charge of the Trokosi system to stop blocking proposals for the review of the system.

He said they should avoid seeing the shrines as their bona fide possessions and resist remaining defiant to popular opinion against the system.

Togbe Anagbo noted that times had changed and the use of human beings, particularly women to atone for crimes no longer sounded appealing, as it prevented the victims from assessing available self-development opportunities such as education.

Togbe Anagbo speaking at the commissioning of a 600 million cedis school block at Kuve on Monday held the view that practitioners must assess the system themselves and see if it had any development importance for development.

The six-room block with a kitchen, an office, place of convenience and furniture was constructed by International Needs Ghana, (ING), a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), championing the review of the trokosi system and the rehabilitation of vulnerable people, including trafficked children.

Geneva Global, Cornerstone Trust and International Needs Network, US based NGOs provided the funds.

Togbe Anagbo commended the NGO for the school block, emphasizing that such projects chiefs and opinion leaders should be pre-occupied with but not keeping systems that impeded the development of individuals and society.

Rev. Walter Bimpong, Founder and President of ING said his NGO planned to put up 20 school blocks in deprived areas within the next five years in addition to the nine already built in the Volta and Greater-Accra regions in support of government efforts in Education.

He said, free textbooks and one free meal a day were being provided by the schools operated by the ING, adding that 600 trafficked children liberated by the NGO from fishing communities in the Gomoa Ewutu- Senya districts were either in formal education or skills training.

Mr La Doyt Rody Rodeheavir, Chief Executive Officer of INN, USA, commissioned the facility urging parents to keep their children in school as their most prized investment.

Miss Kate Aglah, South-Tongu District Chief Executive (DCE) urged the community, which she said a recent International Labour Organisation (ILO) mentioned in a baseline survey as a leading child trafficking community, to utilize the facility and protect it.

Mr Sylvanus Adukpo, Volta Regional Coordinating Officer of the ING told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that the organization had established a flour-kneading machine at Akporkploto, for use by 48 women from 12 communities trained in bread making.