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25.03.2007 General News

Bylaws to prevent teenage pregnancy passed

By myjoyonline

The people of Nankesedo (Saltpond Lower Town) have adopted a number of measures to protect teenage girls from early pregnancy.

The measures include the institution of a number of bylaws prescribing fines on male adults who made school girls and girls under apprenticeship pregnant.

A section of the bylaw states that, "Any man who puts a primary or junior secondary school pupil in the family way will pay six million cedis as compensation to the girl's parents, while the parents will in turn pay ¢500,000 out of the fine into the coffers of the Traditional council for not taking proper care of their daughter, resulting in her pregnancy.”

The Chief of the town and Nyinfahene of the Nkusukum Traditional Area, Nana Baah VI, who read the by-laws to the people at a meeting stated that making a senior secondary school girl pregnant would attract a compensation of ¢10 million to the girl's parents, who would in turn pay one million cedis to the Council for their negligence.”

Nana Baah said if a girl below 18 years who had completed Junior Secondary School (JSS) but was learning a trade was made pregnant, the compensation would be eight million cedis and her parents would be made to pay ¢800,000 to the traditional council.

The chief said it was time some fear was put into men and boys who went on wild chase of young girls and also made parents more responsible for the proper care of their children, especially the girls.

He said the by-law forbade women from moving about in the town with only cloth tied around their chest saying anyone caught in that state would pay a fine of ¢100,000.

Children below the age of 18 years would not be permitted to sell after 19.00 hours. A fine of ¢50,000 would be imposed on anyone who flouted the law.

Screening video films during wake keeping was strictly banned since it attracted a lot of children to funeral grounds.

¢100, 000 fine would be imposed on a bereaved family for violating the law, the chief added.