A 50-year-old Good Samaritan, Madam Love Tetteh, is saddled with the upkeep of a five-year-old missing boy following the shirking of that responsibility by the Kaneshie Police.
Madam Tetteh, also known as Auntie Akweley, said she found the boy, who responds to the name Kofi, at the Kaneshie Market in Accra about three weeks ago without any trace of his parents or guardians.
She said immediately after that, she took the child to the Kaneshie Police Station but to her dismay, the officers on duty refused to take up the case and asked her to go and look for the boy's relatives.
A frustrated Madam Tetteh, who sells tomatoes at the Kaneshie Market, told the Daily Graphic that her three-week search had yielded no results and had rather imposed on her the burden of taking care of a five-year-old stranger, including his medical bills.
She said three weeks ago, at about 8.00 p.m., her daughter, who is also a trader at the market, found the boy loitering and weeping, not knowing his way around. He was carrying a plastic bag containing a pair of sandals and two shirts.
She said moved by the boy's plight, she took him to the Kaneshie Police Station where she encountered that frustration.
Narrating her ordeal at the Kaneshie Police Station, Madam Tetteh said the police insisted that she took the boy with her home, since it was late, so that she could come back the following morning.
According to her, after a whole week of daily visits to the police sta¬tion with the boy, the police offered little assistance, except for their advice that she send him to a show hosted on Metro TV by popular actress, Grace Omaboe, (Maame Dokono) to use her medium to help trace the missing boy's relatives.
Spurred by her motherly love, Madam Tetteh abandoned the police advice and rather turned to radio stations to use their media to run announcements to help reunite the boy with his parents. That effort also achieved no results, hence her decision to call on the Daily Graphic.
She said during the period, "Kofi got sick and I took him to the Kaneshie Polyclinic where he was diagnosed of malaria."
Kofi's inability to communicate well was one of the many difficulties she encountered in locating his home or school.
At the Daily Graphic offices, the little boy tried to open up with little responses, often providing little leads, sometimes in almost inaudible tones when coaxed.
He could not provide the name of his neighbourhood but gave his father's name as Brother Ernest and named his mother as Maame Tse who sells fried yam and turkey tails.
Kofi, who claimed he is a KG1 pupil of a school whose name sounded as "Peace Hand Academy" at a location he did not know, mentioned his teachers as Bro. Mortey and Sir Ellis, with Reynolds being his, friend in class.
Narrating to the Daily Graphic how he left home for the Kaneshie Market was as mind-boggling as it was sympathetic, claiming he had been sent to his father's house by his mother, since the parents were separated.
According to him, he absconded from his father's house when his father was asleep and then followed a stranger to the Kaneshie Market where he was first seen by Madam Tetteh.
A follow-up to the Kaneshie Police Station on Thursday revealed that the Chief Inspector of the station was not aware of the reported case of the missing boy.
Asked why they had not taken cus¬tody of the boy for further investigations to trace the boy's relatives, Chief Inspector Appenteng explained that he was not aware of such a case, saying he had been away pursuing a course at the Police Depot.
Other policemen at the station who knew about the reported case also refused to give the reason they had not acted in line with their duty.
About three traders who had accompanied the Good Samaritan from the Kaneshie Market to the police station insisted that the boy had constantly been refused custody by the officers at the station.
Finally, however, Chief Inspector Appenteng gave the assurance that the necessary documents would be prepared for the boy to be taken to the Department of Social Welfare and for procedures to begin to try and unite him with his relatives.
Source: Daily Graphic