A law lecturer at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Dennis Adjei Dwomoh, has called for more amendments to Ghana’s justice system where juveniles are concerned.
Speaking on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show on Tuesday, he stated that the country’s legal system does not protect children as much as it needs to do, when they become victims of crimes like sexual abuse.
“When the child is the offender, the law makes provisions that the case should be trashed within six months but the law is mute on what should be done in the case of the child being the victim, I think the same provision should be made that the case should be dealt with within 6 months so such cases do not drag for long,” he said.
He stated also that, the court ambiance is intimidating for some children and this can impede smooth proceedings. Besides the ambiance, the pressure on the courts makes it difficult for the cases to be dealt with in time and this causes tiredness and stress to the kids.
“Even as a lawyer I am so tired when I have to wait for one or two hours for my case to be called and that makes me tired, so how will a child who is already traumatized feel”, he asked.
He suggested that the hearing of such sexual abuse cases against children be shifted to Saturdays to decrease the pressure on the victims and also fast-track the process.
Eliza Olympio from the Coalition Against Sexual Abuse, who was also on the show stated that publishing the sexual offenders’ list which is currently privy to the state (police) will help parents protect children from such people.
“Currently the list exists but you will have to apply to see if someone’s name is on it or not”, he said.
Listen to the audio: