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02.08.2004 General News

NGO organises puberty rites for girls

By GNA

Bodomase (Ash), Aug 2, GNA - Thirteen girls from the Bodomase Junior Secondary School in the Sekyere East District at the weekend underwent puberty rites at Bodomase near Kumawu. The ceremony organised by the African Womanhood Is Mine (AWM), a non-governmental organisation (NGO) based in the US, was aimed at eliminating pre-marital sex among the youth.

Nana Akua Taah, Obaapanin of Bodomase, led a team of elderly women from the town to perform the initiation rites that was devoid of nudity such as exposure of breasts and ritual bathing of girls at the stream. Miss Joyce Owusu, Co-ordinator of AWM, said though the programme started at Bodomase, it would be replicated in other schools in the area.

She said the girls who underwent the rites were thought African culture and made to understand that such customs had nothing to do with paganism or idolatry. Miss Owusu advised the aged who helped in organising the ceremony to refrain from singing profane songs during puberty rites. Most women interviewed by the Ghana News Agency for their impressions on the ceremony expressed their desire to initiate their daughters, looking at the modernised simplicity of the ceremony and the gifts given to the girls who were initiated.

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