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10.01.2005 Regional News

CHRAJ receives more than 1000 complaints in Nkoranza

By GNA

Nkoranza (B/A), Jan. 10, GNA - The Nkoranza District Office of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) received more than 1000 complaints from individuals on the abuse of their rights between June 2000 and December 2004.

Mrs. Joyce Boahen, District Director, disclosed this when briefing Ghana News Agency in Nkoranza about the activities of the Commission in the District.

She said the office settled 577 of the cases amicably through mediation and the involvement of the parties concerned.

The 1,006 complaints the Commission received during the period centred on child maintenance, which recorded 434 cases, paternity and child custody, 116, marriage, 100 and inheritance, 113. Other cases were compensation of spouse or concubine, 19, tenancy, 28 and other human rights violations, 196.

Mrs. Boahen noted with regret that inheritance and property issues in the District were very prevalent, saying more than 90 percent of such complaints involved people who died intestate.

She advised parents to save their children from harassment by members of the extended family over their property on their death. The District Director said the office had been carrying out public educational programmes in the communities, schools and churches and on FM radio to sensitise the people about the Commission's activities and programmes.

Main topics covered included child maintenance, custody, PNDC law 111, children and women's rights, rights of the disabled, marriage and domestic violence and female genital mutilation.

Mrs. Boahen called for the rehabilitation of police stations and barracks, which she said were in deplorable conditions and commended Okatakyie Agyeman Kudom 1V, Omanhene of the traditional area and other public spirited individuals for their immense support to the Commission. She expressed the hope that such support would be continued to enable the Commission to discharge its responsibilities to the satisfaction of all.

Meanwhile Mr. James Edjei Biney, Nkoranza District GNAT Secretary has condemned the attitude of a relative who collected a deceased teacher's death benefit of two million cedis and pocketed it.

He alleged that Mr. Paul Kwasi Asante from Pinihe, near Nkoranza the next of kin of Mr. Joseph Owusu Kudom, a former teacher of the Roman Catholic Primary School at Jerusalem near Nkoranza gave only 70,000 cedis out of the amount to the deceased's wife and her three children. "What is disheartening is that Mr. Asante, after collecting the money from me thought it was a booty and spent the money lavishly", he said and urged teachers and other workers "to take a great lesson from his story" and nominate rightful persons as their next of kin.

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