Navrongo (U/E) Feb. 23, GNA - Participants at a day's forum on the Domestic Violence Bill at Navrongo in the Upper East Region on Wednesday urged government and Parliament to hasten the passage of the Bill. The forum, which was on the theme: 'Domestic Violence And You', was organised by the Ministry Of Women And Children's Affairs under the auspices of UNICEF, with the aim of soliciting views of the general public as input for the passage of the Domestic Violence Bill. The Participants were of the view that the Bill when passed would consolidate the family system, since it would protect men, women and children from undue molestation.
One of the facilitators of the forum, a former Upper East Regional Director Of the Department of Women And Children, Madam Veronica Munya, mentioned physical and sexual harassment, Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), defilement, abduction, witchcraft and child labour among others as practical examples of domestic violence.
She explained that victims of domestic violence often developed psychological trauma and fear of the society.
Mr Anthony Awiah, Kassena-Nankana District Director of the Department of Social Welfare, blamed domestic violence on excessive alcoholism, negative cultural practices, barrenness, single sex delivery, forced and early marriages, and polygamy. He enjoined religious and traditional leaders to use their platforms to preach against domestic violence and further impressed upon people to use dialogue to solve the issue of domestic violence. Mr Awiah condemned the destruction of property and injuries, which usually resulted from domestic violence and reiterated the need for the passage of the Bill.
The Regional Director of the Department of Women and Children, Mrs Paulina Abayage, urged participants to educate the masses on the need to report issues of domestic violence to the Department of Social Welfare and the Family tribunals for redress.